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Baptism at St. Peter’s Church
The Sacrament of Holy Baptism is celebrated according to the canons of the church and the rubrics of the Book of Common Prayer. By Baptism, we become full members of the Body of Christ and His Church. Baptisms are therefore part of the public worship of the church and are not performed privately but rather during one of the principal Sunday services. It is expected that persons who are Baptized at Saint Peter’s will answer affirmatively the questions asked in the baptismal covenant, particularly concerning their participation in the life and ministry of this parish. When we baptize infants and small children, it is expected that their parents and/or guardians will assist their children in regular attendance at worship and in the life of the congregation.
The Book of Common Prayer directs that it is especially appropriate for Holy Baptism to be performed at these feasts: The Baptism of our Lord, The Great Vigil and Easter, Pentecost Sunday, and All Saints Sunday. It is also appropriate to celebrate Baptism at the visitation of our Bishop. In addition to the dates listed above, a baptism may also be scheduled on other Sundays of any month other than those listed above. Except in the case of extreme emergency, baptisms will not be performed in the season of Lent.
Before the Baptism is celebrated there is always instruction for the individual and/or parents. Godparents are also strongly urged to be participants in this instruction. If you wish to be baptized or to have your child baptized, please speak with Fr. Jeff.
Blessings for Birthday and Anniversary
Our congregation enjoys receiving blessings for birthdays and wedding anniversaries.
Each year on the anniversary of St. Francis of Assisi, St. Peter's holds a blessing ceremony for our pets.
Confirmation & Reception
Confirmation is a pastoral rite in which a mature person, who was baptized as an infant or young child, reaffirms his or her baptismal vows with a blessing and laying on of hands by the Bishop. Reception is a similar rite in which a Christian, who has been baptized as an adult in another tradition, is received into the Episcopal Church by means of a blessing and laying on of hands by a Bishop. The Bishop visits Saint Peter’s Church once every year, in part to Confirm or Receive new members into the Church. Prior to his visit, those wishing to be Confirmed or Received, will be prepared by Fr. Ross through study, prayer and contemplation. If you are interested in being Confirmed or Received, please speak with Fr. Jeff.
Funerals and Memorial Services
The death of a child of God is a tender event. Members of the church are urged to call Fr. Jeff as soon as possible when death is anticipated or has come, in order that he may bring the comfort of our faith and the presence of the church family. In addition, parishioners are encouraged to sit down with the Rector ahead of time to make advance arrangements. It is appropriate for the funeral of a Christian to take place in the Church. A viewing can also be held in the parish hall or the church prior to the service. The service should be held at a time when the congregation has an opportunity to be present. Members and their families may also avail themselves of the Pilottown Cemetery.
St. Peter’s Episcopal Church is available to the community to conduct weddings, funerals and memorial services in accordance with the liturgy of the Book of Common Prayer and the traditions of the Episcopal Church.
FEES FOR FUNERALS AND MEMORIAL SERVICES - Download Word Doc.
Holy Unction & Sick Calls
All parishioners are strongly urged to inform the church when they or a loved one are seriously ill and/or hospitalized. Our clergy are very willing to visit and pray with members of the congregation at any time, but especially when they are in need. When you call the office, please let the staff know if you or your loved one would like to be anointed with the oil of the sick (Holy Unction) for healing and/or have Holy Communion brought to you.
ST. PETER'S OFFERS THE SACRAMENT OF MARRIAGE TO ALL PERSONS.
Entering a Holy Union or marriage is a major rite of celebration in the Christian community. St. Peter’s Episcopal Church is available to the community to conduct wedding services in accordance with the liturgy of the Book of Common Prayer and the traditions of the Episcopal Church.
St. Peter's will provide service to anyone if at least one partner is a baptized Christian. In the course of this celebration, a couple declares before God and the congregation that they are knowingly and without reservation entering a relationship that has consequences for them and for society as a whole. When two people present themselves for a Holy union, they are declaring that they are a part of the Christian community and are, or desire to begin to be participants in the life and witness of the faith community.
In order to uphold the integrity of both the Sacrament of Holy unions and to provide a setting in which the couple and their families and friends can celebrate its joy, the following policies and procedures are adhered to in this parish. For more details about weddings at St Peter's download the document provided in the link.
At various times during the Christian year it has become a tradition at St. Peter’s to hold a prayer vigil in the Church. In preparation we make certain that at least one person is responsible for one hour, but more than one person is welcome to participate at any given hour. The hour may be spent in reading the scriptures or other devotional literature that is made available, in meditation, or prayer. This is done for the purpose of making intercession for the worshiping community in its ministry. Traditionally we have a Prayer Vigil beginning the evening of Maundy Thursday that goes through Good Friday, as well as before and during events that affect the parish and world.
This sacrament is the setting apart, by the laying on of hands and prayer by a bishop, of a person, to function in the Ministry of Word and Sacraments in the Church. There are three orders of ordained ministry in the Episcopal Church: Bishop, Priest and Deacon. Those who are contemplating a vocation of ministry should speak with Fr. Jeff.
The sacrament of Reconciliation is a rite by which a minister of the church absolves and offers forgiveness of sin to a penitent in the name of Christ and his church. The sacrament is also known by the term confession and is available to anyone who feels that sinful events in their life have caused a block in their relationship with Christ. It is by no means mandatory, but is rather a means offered by the Church to help reconcile individuals to God and to receive counsel in restoring their relationship with Christ. It is celebrated upon request to Fr. Jeff.
The gathering of small groups of people for the purpose of support, healing and well-being are profoundly helpful for persons facing serious challenges in life. These groups arise on an as needed basis. Effective support groups are usually composed of four to eight persons, have a primary purpose, require a commitment to confidentiality and to meet for a limited period of time. At the end of this predetermined time, the group decides whether to continue to meet for another specified period of time or to conclude. Further information may be obtained by calling the church office.