St. Matthew's United Methodist Church

Dave Felps

Senior Pastor

I am from Bastrop, located about 30 miles east of Austin. I received a Computer Science degree from Texas A&M and I worked in the computer industry as a software engineer for 13 years before I was called into full time ministry. My wife, Christi, and I have two daughters. Abby is my oldest and she works at Amazon. My youngest daughter, Emma, attends Tarleton State in Stephenville. She majors in Public Health.  Christi is the Director of Human Resources at the ButterKrust bakery and we have been married over 25 years.

My hobbies are woodworking and playing guitar. I like teaching and I like getting to know people because there are so many interesting stories to hear. I love to worship God and I love to laugh. Joy is a big part of a life with Jesus and it is something I truly appreciate.

In ministry, I have always been very active in mission and outreach. I am on the board of a fostering agency called EmberHope Youthville. I work with a prison ministry called Kairos which serves the Torres Unit in Hondo, Tx. In previous churches, I have helped start a food pantry and I have run an addiction recovery ministry. I believe God’s call on our lives pushes us to be ministry with those who are hurting. Matthew 25 tell us to welcome the stranger, visit the imprisoned and help those we see who are in need. As we do these things, we learn to see Christ and become closer to Him.

Kyle Utterback


Veronica Hernandez

Pastor of Hispanic Ministries

Veronica was born in Guanajuato, Mexico and lived in the city of Piedras Negras, Coahuila most of her life. She is an ordained elder in the Methodist Church of Mexico and graduated from John Wesley Seminary. She also received a degree in Business Administration from the University of Coahuila. Veronica was a member of the San Pablo Methodist Church in Piedras Negras for nearly 17 years where she served as Director of Evangelism and Missions and on the church board. She also assisted with a church plant in her district for 5 years and led Bible study groups for women on both sides of the border for more than a decade.

In 2012, Veronica and her husband Jeff founded “Bridges of Compassion,” an evangelical service ministry dedicated to helping the under privileged in Piedras Negras in which they continue to serve actively. Jeff and Veronica came to San Antonio with beautiful 16-year old daughter Keren in September of 2014.

Nicole Santiago

Director of Children & Family Ministries

Nicole Santiago is a learning specialist and student advocate. As a learning specialist, she assesses clients and then teaches them to grow their executive functioning skills which include emotional regulation, task initiation, and time management. As an advocate, she ensures students with learning differences receive the most appropriate educational services possible. She often collaborates with OT’s, SLP’s and neuropsychologists all in the name of student improvement and success. Her practice is located in San Antonio, TX, and everywhere (virtually). Directing the Children’s Program at St. Matt’s is a rich addition to her work with children.  She cannot wait for your kids to grow in their understanding of how much God loves them!

Anna Gann

Director of Student Ministries

Anna currently is the choir director at MacArthur High School and has been a high school choir director and private voice teacher for over 15 years. She has served as Fine Arts Director at Big Spring Independent School District, her alma mater, head choir director for the Big Spring High School choir, and head choir director of both East Central High School and also Edgewood Fine Arts Academy. Also before San Antonio she worked at the largest choir program in Texas at Allen High School.

She has a degree in vocal performance from Lubbock Christian University and an M.S. in music/choral conducting from UTSA. Anna also worked as choir director at First United Methodist Church Lewisville and Big Spring FUMC for many years before moving to SA. She also sings jazz on the side and is a big supporter of San Antonio culture and music.

Anna has a wonderful husband, Ben, and two kids, Chandler 6 and Ellanor 4, all of which are the joy of her life. Anna is a frequent adjudicator for Texas UIL competitions as well as ICHSA and ICCA. Professional memberships include TMEA, TCDA, ACDA and TMAA.

James Garcia

Director of Music Ministries

I am a native San Antonian and received my Bachelor’s in Music Theory & Composition from the University of Texas at San Antonio, with extra coursework and mentoring in vocal performance, choral directing and sacred music, including conducting with Dr. John J. Silantien. Music ministry has been a great joy, from my early days as a choral scholar to directing multiple church ensembles in various styles of worship, including chant, motets, anthems, oratorios, hymns, spirituals, Gospel Jazz mass settings, Spanish and Flamenco masses, and Contemporary Praise & Worship.

My wife and fellow musician, Tawni, and I have 4 children (3 sons and 1 daughter) ages 13 – 34; two fresh puppies, a squirrel, and a fish; several basses and guitars, a plethora of percussion instruments, a drum kit, a piano, two keyboards, a small djembe, porch wind chimes, but no kazoos and sadly, no didgeridoo (yet).

I direct opera and teach voice at St Mary’s University, sing in the SA Mastersingers, and play bass in a few bands. I enjoy making cookies, Tex-Mex meals, and egg-based breakfast dishes. I visit SAMA, the McNay, the Witte, and other museums. I occasionally read and participate in nerdy music/theology/philosophy discussions.

In music ministry, I focus on making a joyful, prayerful noise unto God; being a complete fan of music in order to serve it well and lead others; creating a meditational musical time of being in God’s presence; striving for excellence and channeling our best efforts toward telling the story of God’s relationship with us.

Holly Sandeen

Administrative Assistant

Holly grew up in De Witt County Texas and moved to San Antonio in 2005, where she graduated from Ronald Reagan High School. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Pastoral Ministry from Pacific Rim Christian University in Honolulu, Hawaii and while there she met her husband, Garrett. Holly has continued her studies in Theology at Denver Seminary and Fuller Theological Seminary, and she is taking courses from Faith Formation Leadership Academy through Rio Texas Conference.

In her free time, Holly is an adjunct biology professor at Christ Mission College in Helotes. She also crochets, crafts, reads, and plays video games. Her pride and joy are her two children, Aletheia and Declan.

Hawaii waites

Day School Director

My name is  Ms. Hawaii-Kalani Waites, I am the Director of St .Matthew’s  Day School. I have the honor of working in the Childcare Industry for 17 years.  I started as a Preschool Teacher and worked continuously throughout this journey and became a Director. I’ve also learned to build relationships with Staff, Parents, and Children.

I’ve received a Child Development Associate in Early Childhood (CDA), Texas School Ready Certification (TSR), Certification Director License through the State of Texas, and I am currently working on a Business Degree for Early Childhood.

I was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas and the youngest of four children, I am also a Mother of three daughters, and value the importance of  Spending quality time with my family and embracing every moment that is shared.

“We play as we learn , and learn as we play”

Tawni Garcia


Tawni Garcia is a native of San Antonio and a product of the Judson ISD. She has a Bach. in Music Studies from The University of Texas at San Antonio and has spent years in the classroom teaching, accompanying, and supporting fellow music teachers. She and her husband, James, have worked alongside each other to provide music at numerous local churches throughout their 26 years of marriage. Currently, she assists James in his duties here at St Matt’s as the Director of Music and fills in at the piano when needed. When not doing something musical, she is caring for her husband, four children, two dogs, and one hamster.

Carl Watson



We are located just down the street from MacArthur High School.

Our address is:
2738 MacArthur View
San Antonio, TX 78217


At Nacogdoches Rd. and Loop 410, go north on Nacogdoches. Turn left on MacArthur View and you will find us on the left a little past the high school.


We believe everything begins with God’s love (also called Grace). God loves us before we know about God. God is our Creator.

God came to earth to become one of us. This is our Christmas celebration each year… God is with us and is called Jesus. Jesus was born in humble circumstances and came not as a powerful king, but as a lowly servant to save the world. Jesus is our Redeemer.

God remains with us today to guide, inspire and breathe life into us as the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit is our advocate.

We are called Christians because we follow Jesus, the Christ. Jesus lived his life as an example for us to follow. He died so that we wouldn’t have to carry our sin which separates us from God. Jesus was resurrected so we might know eternal life, which is a life not defined by death.

We learn about Jesus, the early church and the history of God’s work in the world through the scriptures. We believe the Bible is inspired by God and contains everything necessary for salvation.

We are all subject to the effects of sin. Sin is when we turn our backs on God by our actions and inactions. The good news is we don’t have to be bogged down by our sin, but as we allow Jesus to forgive it, the weight we carry falls away. This is all due to God’s love for us and desire for a relationship with all.

As we live in a relationship with Jesus… we learn the greatest commandment which is to love God and our neighbor with all our heart, soul, mind and being. In this life, strangers become friends, enemies are loved, the downtrodden are lifted up and those on the margins are counted as important. Everything begins with God’s Love.

About the United Methodist Church

Regardless of one’s age, race, life-story, or standpoint, each unique individual is welcomed within our churches. We strive to weave the fabric between our disciples through our appointed-clergy system, mission-based outreach practices, and united giving.

“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you.” (Matthew 28:19-20)

Derived from this “Great Commission,” our church’s mission is to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. We uphold this all-encompassing objective through four basic principles: welcoming, worshiping, nurturing, and sending.

This page provides a brief overview of our purpose of action within the United Methodist Church. Please visit the Main UMC Website for more details on our mission, our faith, our people, and our world.

Mission / Vision

St. Matthews United Methodist Church is part of a worldwide denomination known as the United Methodist Church. Lovingly referred to as St. Matt’s, we are one of many United Methodist congregations in the San Antonio area. We are made stronger by our connection with other churches through our missions and ministries.

Our faith is guided by scripture, tradition, experience and reason. We believe everyone is called to participate in the ministry of Jesus Christ. John Wesley, put it plainly, “Do all the good you can, in all the places you can, to all the people you can, as long as ever you can.” This spirit is alive and well at St. Matt’s.

Worship is a vital part of the St Matthew’s experience. The pastor, lay leaders, music staff, band and choir are dedicated to leading meaningful and uplifting worship experiences. Our regular worship services are at 8:30 and 11:00 am every Sunday morning. Our Spanish service (Agua Viva) is at 12:30 on Sundays. You will find the people who attend to be friendly. Dress is traditional to casual, whatever is comfortable for you.

Embracing our Methodist heritage, we affirm God’s claim upon our lives and actively invest our hearts, minds and resources to live as disciples of Jesus Christ. We respect diversity of belief. In this spirit, we want to be a place where people can explore and expand their spiritual lives, striving to make God’s love visible in this world.

Our History

November 1, 1959 – The first service for St. Matthew’s Church was in a rented building at 2930 Nacogdoches Rd.

Originally the home of the Jack Cone family, this building was once a country club and, more recently, Gilbert’s Bar and Lounge.

August 14, 1960 – Groundbreaking was on Bitters Rd. since renamed to MacArthur View. That building is still in use for classrooms, the choir room and nursery.

Today – Growing and changing to meet your needs, we provide disaster relief and feed the homeless under the bridge. We host a Scout Troop and have a Parent’s Night Out ministry. We also have a Day School that has been in operation for 50 years. We have a Spanish language ministry called Agua Viva. On Wednesday nights, we offer a light meal before classes for children, youth and adults are held.

Our Worship

Sunday mornings we offer a traditional, a blended service and a Spanish language service. Dress for all services is traditional to casual.

Holy Communion is the first Sunday of each month and everyone is invited.

Special worship services are Christmas Eve, Ash Wednesday, Good Friday and Easter.


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