St. Matthew Evangelical Lutheran Church, York PA
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St. Matthew's Staff Members

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Eric R. Riley
  Artist in Residence/Organist

Mr. Eric R. Riley began his position as Artist in Residence for St. Matthew on September 1st, 2016.  He comes to us from the prestigious Market Square Presbyterian Church in Harrisburg, where he was Director of Music and Organist for nine years, and conductor of the Central PA Oratorio Singers (housed at Market Square) for five years.  In the summer of 2012 he began duties as Artistic Director of the Wheatland Chorale.


Previously, he held the post of Director of Music and Organist at First United Methodist Church, Cleveland, Ohio for fourteen years.  While in Ohio, Mr. Riley was Associate Artistic Director of Voices of Canton in Canton, Ohio and served as accompanist to the chorus and organist/harpsichordist with the Canton Symphony Orchestra in Canton, Ohio.  Mr. Riley has held other church positions in Syracuse, NY, Nashville, TN and Richmond, VA.


Mr. Riley’s recent performances include the Saint-Saens “Organ” Symphony (No. 3) with the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra and conductor Stuart Malina, a dedication concert on the re-built organ at Camp Hill United Methodist Church, an all-Mendelssohn program at the Cathedral of St. Patrick in Harrisburg, a Messiaen performance for Market Square Concerts, and a Bach Marathon performance for Chevy Chase Presbyterian Church in Washington, DC.  The Harrisburg, PA Patriot-News called Riley’s performance with the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra “…a stirring performance…” and went on to say, “…Riley was spot-on.” (Sunday, October 3, 2010)


A veteran of multiple European performance trips, Eric Riley has performed in Italy for the Spoleto Festival of Two Worlds, the International Festival of Choral Singing in Castillione del Lago, the Festival of World Music in Perugia, CoroFest Umbria, the Assisi Music Festival, the Ravenna International Organ Festival at S. Vitale and VOCI E ORGANI DELL’APPENNINO in Bologna.  Most recently he performed organ concerts in Linguaglossa and at the Cathedral in Caltanissetta on the island of Sicily, and conducted the Market Square Singers in concerts in Assisi, Florence, Lucca and Pistoia.   After his concert in Lizzano, il Resto del Carlino in Bologna, Italy proclaimed, “Lizzano

enchanted by Mr. Riley,” and went on to say, “…from Vivaldi to Langlais, Mr. Riley enchanted the audience with magic at the organ.”  (Giovedi, 26 Giugno, 2008)   In 1993 Eric Riley won Second Prize in the Flint International Organ Competition and was a finalist in the Naples International Organ Competition and the Fort Wayne National Organ Competition (USA).  Eric Riley is a First Prize winner in the Arthur Poister Memorial Scholarship Competition (Syracuse, NY) and a two-time Poister Prize winner while at Syracuse University.


Riley is former conductor of Jubilate! Choral Ensemble in York, PA, the Walsh University Chorale in North Canton, Ohio and the Metropolitan Chorale of the Metropolitan School for the Arts in Syracuse, NY.  His conducting and vocal instructors include Larry Doebler, G. Burton Harbison, Sandra Willetts, Daniel Pratt and Deborah Montgomery. At the organ he has studied with Karel Paukert, Robert Parkins, Wilma Jensen and Will O. Headlee.


Mr. Riley holds the Master of Church Music degree in choral conducting and organ from Scarritt Graduate School (Vanderbilt University) in Nashville, TN and the Bachelor of Music degree in organ performance from Syracuse University, Syracuse, NY.  He and his wife, Christine, live near Hummelstown, PA.

Deborah N. Frey
  Director of Christian Education
  Deborah, or "Miss Debbie" as she is affectionately known by the children and youth, is a native of York and a "daughter" of the St. Matthew congregation. She is a graduate of York College of Pennsylvania and received her Masters of Arts in Religion at the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Gettysburg. She and her husband, Jon, have one daughter. (Jon serves as a guitarist and vocalist for the Contemporary Worship service.)

During her seminary years, Debbie worked in youth ministry at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church of York with Pastor David Hoh. After graduation from seminary in 1982, Debbie served for four years at St. Matthew Lutheran Church in Hanover as Director of Youth and Evangelism. In 1986, Debbie returned "home" to St. Matthew as Director of Christian Education and Youth. Today her ministry umbrella covers most areas of education as well as other ministries involving children and youth.

Growing up at St. Matthew with the role models of sincere, loving and dedicated pastors, along with life long friends, also involved in youth ministry and Sunday School, made returning to this congregation a prayer answered and an opportunity to give back to others what was shared with her through the church.

Debbie tries to share her joy of life as well as the love and care of her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, with all those she serves. Her prayer is that, as a congregation, we continue to welcome all who enter our doors for Sunday Church School and worship. And that together, we do God’s will in the congregation’s ministry, the community and the world.

LaQuinn N. Thompson
  Community Outreach Director

November 8. 1993, LaQuinn Thompson was born in the city of York. Raised by his single mother, he attended York City schools and also became a product of the Lighthouse Youth Center. His passion to work with the youth came to light in his ninth grade year at William Penn Senior High School. Since his years of being a camper at the Lighthouse came to an end, he continued his time there being a Summer Camp Counselor and a volunteer during the school year. He became a graduate of York High in 2011 and went off to college to further his education in the field of Applied Human Services. In May of 2016, he graduated college with his Bachelors with the passion to become a youth center director in his hometown. In August 2016, LaQuinn began his journey as “The Matts” Youth Center Director.


LaQuinn is very passionate about inspiring and motivating the youth to become the best person they can be. He is a published author/poet with his book titled “Mind of the B.E.A.S.T.”. He uses the acronym, B.E.A.S.T., as a way to connect with the youth in hopes of inspiring and motivating them to be positive and to strive toward achieving their goals. B.E.A.S.T. stands for Be yourself, Experience life at its full potential, Achieve greatness, Shine like no other, and Testimony.


LaQuinn enjoys playing basketball, writing poetry, reading mystery novels by James Patterson, playing video games, and spending quality time with close friends and family. Understanding that God’s plan for him is to work with youth, he continues to remain focused on spreading the Gospel and bringing positivity to the lives of the youth in and around the York area. “It is time to allow our youth to thrive and grow into positive leaders for our next generations. They are our present and our future. Let’s allow our youth to activate their B.E.A.S.T. Mode!”


Stephanie A. Johnson
  Discipleship Connector

Stephanie Johnson is excited to have joined the staff team as half time Discipleship Connector in June 2017.  She and her husband Doug, a Lutheran pastor, relocated to the area from Iowa after nine years of ministry in the Des Moines area.  They loved their time in Iowa but now are happy to be back in York where they enjoy living closer to two children, one granddaughter, and Stephanie’s parents.  Family members also include a very sweet cockapoo named Maggie.

Stephanie graduated from Southern Connecticut State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Early Childhood Education and then later received her Master of Divinity degree from the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Gettysburg.  Her career has included teaching dance and preschool in CT, teaching an after-school drama program called Drama Kids International in MD, and most recently serving at Grace Lutheran Church in Des Moines, IA as the Director of Laity Ministries. 

Stephanie enjoys adventures with her husband, classical dance, theatre, and going for walks with her husband and dog.  She is happy to be getting to know the people of St. Matthew and learning about their passions and gifts

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St. Matthew Evangelical Lutheran Church • 839 West Market St. • York, PA 17401-3607
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