Meet Our Pastor
The Rev. Matthew A. Laferty is the pastor of the English-Speaking United Methodist Church of Vienna since August 2015. He is an ordained pastor and commissioned missionary of The United Methodist Church. Prior to his appointment in Vienna, Pastor Matthew served as the pastor of the Moscow Protestant Chaplaincy—an international, interdenominational church in Moscow, Russia—from 2011-2015. Additionally he concurrently served as executive director of MPC Social Services, directing an immigrant outreach center working in areas of hunger, medical assistance, integration, anti-racism, and counter-human trafficking. Under his leadership in Moscow, Pastor Matthew expanded MPC’s free medical clinic to include special programs in public health, pre- and post-natal care, and gynecological services, launched an organic farm to employ refugees and supplement MPC’s food subsidy programs, developed more financially sustainable food assistance programs which served more than 300 families per month, and initiated a counter-human trafficking program assisting immigrants trafficked as sex slaves. Pastor Matthew also served as a pastoral associate at Tabor Lutheran Church in Branford, Connecticut, USA, from 2010-2011, and a consultant with The United Methodist Church’s ecumenical agency. He also has community organizing experience with Connecticut AIDS Resource Coalition (now AIDS Connecticut).
Originally from Crestline, Ohio, USA, Pastor Matthew holds a Master of Divinity degree from Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, USA. He was awarded the Downes Prize for worship leadership by Yale University in 2011. Pastor Matthew also holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science and international studies from United Methodist-related Ohio Wesleyan University where he graduated cum laude and with university honors.
Pastor Matthew has extensive service to The United Methodist Church. He served as a delegate to the 2004 and 2008 General Conferences; he chaired the 2008 General Conference’s Committee on Conferences and Structure. Pastor Matthew was appointed by the Council of Bishops to the Study Committee on the Worldwide Nature of the Church (2008-2012), a four year study commission examining mission and church structure. He was also appointed as a delegate from The United Methodist Church to the General Assembly of the World Council of Churches in Busan, Korea, in November 2013. Pastor Matthew served on the board of directors of the United Methodist Historical and Archives Commission (the General Commission on Archives and History) from 2008-2016 where he chaired the commission’s historical interpretation committee and served on the executive committee. He is a member of the World Methodist Council. Pastor Matthew serves on the steering committee of the United Methodist Missionary Association. In 2016 Pastor Matthew was appointed to the Committee on Faith and Order, the 16-member denomination-wide authority on matters of doctrine and faith. He also is a member of the Austria Provisional Conference Commission of Theology, Ethics, and Liturgical Issues. He is a clergy member of the East Ohio Conference.
Pastor Matthew serves as the secretary for the Association of International Churches in Europe and the Middle East.
Pastor Matthew is an avid traveler and enjoys eating good food.
You can contact him at pastor [at] esumc.at
Pastors Who Served ESUMC
|1978-1981||Lee and Edith Varner|
|1987-1988||Jim Dwyer (interim)|
|1988-1991||Glenn and Kay Fuller|
|1997||Bill Daniel (interim)|
|2015-Present||Matthew A. Laferty|