In our community and in our world

Who We Are

Our Mission, St Peters, The Episcopal Church, History

Who We Are

St. Peter's parish is a growing, vibrant Christian community. Its members are serious about their faith, seek to be filled with the Holy Spirit, and dedicated to sharing God's  Word. We have high ambitions for St. Peter's outreach to the community. Our members value being fed spiritually at the Eucharist and are gladdened by the opportunity to come to the altar for prayers of healing. We value the friendliness and mutual support of each other.  We value the opportunities for education for adults and children on Sunday mornings, at other times during the week.

The Episcopal Church

The Episcopal Church welcomes you.

The Episcopal Church welcomes all who worship Jesus Christ, in 109 dioceses and regional areas in 17 nations. The Episcopal Church is a member province of the worldwide Anglican Communion.

The mission of the church, as stated in the Book of Common Prayer’s catechism (p. 855), is "to restore all people to unity with God and each other in Christ."

As part of that mission, we’re following Jesus into loving, liberating and life-giving relationship with God, with each other and with the earth as the Episcopal branch of the Jesus Movement.  We seek every day to love God with our whole heart, mind and soul, and to love our neighbors as ourselves (Matthew 22:36-40).

For the Episcopal Church, the Jesus Movement calls us to focus on three specific Priorities:

EVANGELISM:
Listen for Jesus' movement in our lives and in the world. Give thanks. Proclaim and celebrate it! Invite the Spirit to do the rest.

RECONCILIATION:
Embody the loving, liberating, life-giving way of Jesus with each other.

CREATION CARE:
Encounter and honor the face of God in creation.

Our Mission

The mission of St. Peter's

Saint Peter’s is a blessed community of faith, grounded in the power of God’s transforming love, where Jesus Christ welcomes all to abundant life.  Empowered by the Holy Spirit, we follow Him in prayer and praise, study and service.

Our Roots

Our story begins in 1874

Saint Peter’s Church, which was officially organized as a mission parish of the Diocese of New Jersey in 1874, originated in 1868 when a small group of Christians began meeting in the home of a local physician, Dr. Sharp and expressed their desire for Episcopal church services in Medford. Shortly thereafter, the rector of Saint Andrew’s Church, Mount Holly, the Reverend Charles M. Perkins, came to Medford on horseback to conduct services in various local homes on Sunday afternoons. When attendance outgrew local homes, services were held at the Odd Fellows Hall on Bank Street.

Continued growth led to the "Mission in the Pines" project to acquire the land and raise the necessary money to build the church. Local Episcopal churches, namely St. Andrew’s, Mount Holly, Saint Paul’s, Camden and Saint Mary’s, Burlington, supported the project. On November 18, 1875, Bishop Scarborough of the Diocese of New Jersey laid the cornerstone of the new church building on Union Street in the village of Medford. Services were first held there on February 10, 1876 and the building consecrated by Bishop Scarborough on January 25, 1877. Although the original church building is still standing, it no longer serves as a church.

The early years of the parish were plagued with financial difficulties and periods when the church was without an ordained clergyman. Even when it had a rector, St. Peter’s was often part of a circuit ministry in which the rectors also maintained responsibilities for other mission outposts in the Pine Barrens. Although the parish church continued in its mission, it did not begin to flourish until the early 1950’s when the population in and around Medford began to grow. In 1951, Bishop Alfred Banyard, of the Diocese of New Jersey, recognized St. Peter’s potential--but also its need for assistance--and appointed seminarian Glen Williams to explore the development, outreach and mission of St. Peter’s.

After his ordination, Father Williams was assigned to St. Peter’s and began a building program in earnest. His parents, Carl and Emilie Williams donated the farmland on the corner of Hartford andChristopher Mill Road where the church now stands and also made major financial contributions towards the cost of building a new church. The first services were held in the new church on November 10, 1957 and the building was consecrated in 1958.

The new location and new building sparked continued growth and in that same year a new wing was added to the south end of the church. It is now the parish hall named in honor of the Williams family. The following year, in 1959, a wing was added to the north end of the church to provide Sunday school classrooms and an apartment for then rector, Father Probert Herb. In 1962, the rectory was built on Christopher Mill Road and the former rector’s apartment converted into additional Sunday school space. In 1974, the centennial year of St. Peter’s founding, parishioners embarked upon "The Centennial Project" to expand its Sunday school space once again. The new classrooms were dedicated in 1977.

Continued parish growth resulted in crowded, noisy services in the worship space—a space now divided into the Chapel and Williams Hall. Recognizing that if St. Peter’s was to grow, a new sanctuary was necessary, the parish prayerfully undertook another building program. The new sanctuary was added to the physical plant in 1994 and consecrated by Rt. Rev. G.P. Mellick Belshaw, Bishop of the Diocese of New Jersey, on February 4, 1994.

A reading of the above is a history of buildings and expansions. However, Saint Peter’s is more than just bricks and mortar. It is a loving, caring community of Christians that has always recognized that the church exists not for those who are members but for those who do not yet know the love of Christ. It was the vision of Dr. Sharp and others who met in his home that a church where the word of God would be preached should be built in Medford. It was the dedication, work and sacrifice of members that made that vision come to fruition with the first church building on Union Street. This same dedication, hard work and sacrifice came into action when it was recognized that the old church building was inadequate if the church was to grow.

Building the church on Hartford and Christopher Mill Roads was an enormous leap of faith that proved to be the right move at the right time. The same spirit to teach ever more people about Christ motivated the parish family to build additions to the "new" church, as well as to build the new nave in the early 1990s. This recognition of purpose has always been a part of the heart and soul of this parish family and has resulted in a parish that continues to grow in size and in spirituality.

The Reverend Canon James L. Moore was called to be rector of Saint Peter’s in April 1967 and remained until his retirement in May 2002. He was the rector when the Sunday school wing was built in 1977, and when the new sanctuary was constructed. A history of St. Peter’s would not be complete without mention of his 35 years of leadership. His legacy includes empowerment of lay ministry at Saint Peter’s and will have a lasting effect in the church for years to come.

Our Facilities

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Announcements: Jan 27

In your daily devotions this week pray for the Anglican Church of Australia; clergy in transition; the members and ministry of the Committee on Classification of Congregations; and Richard Benedict, Daphne Hawkes, Kent Walley, Lynnette Fuller, Theodore Anderson, Jr., and Joseph Leigh, priests of our diocese.

The Flowers on the Altar are given to the greater glory of God and in loving memory of Frank and Josephine Seidenwand, parents of Judy Croll.

Fresh Start for St. Peter’s Prayer List: St. Peter’s intercessory prayer list will be cleared as of January 31, 2019. The new list, effective February 1, 2019, will contain only those prayer requests made or updated by January 31. Please contact Deacon Helen (dcnhelen@stpetersmedford.org) or Lisa Minerd (office@stpetersmedford.org, 609-654-2963) with any updates. Prayer requests will be kept on the list for one month unless renewed.

ShopRite & Acme cards are available for purchase after all services. Thank you for your continued support of the students of Redemption School, Haiti.

The church now has a text list to keep in touch with the parish! This will be used in case service times need to be cancelled for inclement weather, and to keep you up to date on any important happenings at church. We promise that we will not send too many messages–only the really important ones! To join, please text the phrase @1hartford to 81010. (Standard text messaging rates apply.)

Donations needed for St. Valentine outreach: On Feb 10, the Sunday School children will be making St. Valentine’s Day cards during the second half of class time in Williams Hall. These cards will be distributed to homebound parishioners and included in a gift basket for Weisman Children’s Rehabilitation Hospital. We will be collecting items for children ages 1-17 January 27, February 3 and 10 to put in the basket. Items needed are playing cards, puzzle books, coloring books, simple toys, magazines, books, games, crayons, electronic games. Please no edible items. Everyone is invited to participate.

Boy Scout Sunday, February 3rd at 10:15 service. All Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts and Girl Scouts are invited to be recognized at the 10:15 am service.

Announcements: Jan 20, 2019

In your daily devotions this week pray for the Anglican Church of Australia; the members and ministry of the Committee on Resolutions and the Committee on the Diaconate; Sylvestre Romero, retired priest of our diocese; Robert Turner, deacon of diocese; and Lisa Caton, Polly Kasey, Emily Mellott, Lydia Edwards, Thomas Haverly, Anne-Marie Jeffery, and Nancy Speck, priests of our diocese.

The Flowers on the Altar are given to the greater glory of God and in loving memory of Lillian Dow, mother of Walter Dow; Betsy Dow, late wife of Walter Dow, and Emily Glover, mother of Edith Green.

Fresh Start for St. Peter’s Prayer List: St. Peter’s intercessory prayer list will be cleared as of January 31, 2019. The new list, effective February 1, 2019, will contain only those prayer requests made or updated by January 31. Please contact Deacon Helen (dcnhelen@stpetersmedford.org) or Lisa Minerd (office@stpetersmedford.org, 609-654-2963) with any updates. Prayer requests will be kept on the list for one month unless renewed.

Diocese of NJ hosts Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service on January 21, beginning in Trinity Cathedral at 10 am. Honor the legacy and the memory of the late civil rights leader by joining your brothers and sisters from across the diocese to serve others. Following a special Eucharist in the cathedral, we will gather for a series of service projects that serve at-risk communities. It’s a fitting tribute to a man who dedicated his life to the service of others. For more information, go to http://dioceseofnj.org/calendar/mlk-day-of-service/

ShopRite & Acme cards are available for purchase after all services. Thank you for your continued support of the students of Redemption School, Haiti.

The church now has a text list to keep in touch with the parish! This will be used in case service times need to be cancelled for inclement weather, and to keep you up to date on any important happenings at church. We promise that we will not send too many messages–only the really important ones! To join, please text the phrase @1hartford to 81010. (Standard text messaging rates apply.)

Need volunteers to rake/blow leaves from the rectory. If you can help, please email John Colaianni – john.colaianni @gmail.com. Thank you.

Donations needed for St. Valentine outreach:  On Feb 10, the Sunday School children will be making St. Valentine’s Day cards during the second half of class time in Williams Hall. These cards will be distributed to homebound parishioners and included in a gift basket for Weisman Children’s Rehabilitation Hospital. We will be collecting items for children ages 1-17 January 27, February 3 and 10 to put in the basket. Items needed are playing cards, puzzle books, coloring books, simple toys, magazines, books, games, crayons, electronic games. Please no edible items. Everyone is invited to participate.

Scout Sunday, February 3rd at 10:15 am. All Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts and Girl Scouts are invited to participate in the recognition at the 10:15 am service.

Announcements: Jan 13, 2019

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In your daily devotions this week pray for the Anglican Church of Australia; the members and ministry of the Committee on Credentials of Lay Deputies and the Commission on Black Ministry; Kenneth Carpinelli, Joseph Luzardo, Michelleslie Maltese-Nehrbass, Michelle OQuendo and Brigitte Pincelli, deacons of our diocese; and Christopher Duffy, Louise Kingston, Edward Martin, Edward Murphy, Petrina Pyatt, Valerie Redpath, Dirk Reinken, Edmund Zelly, Michael McHugh, Martha Blacklock, George Deatrick, Paul Jeanes, Mary Schjonberg, Gregory Bezilla, Joyce Scheyer, priests of our diocese.

ShopRite & Acme cards are available for purchase after all services. Thank you for your continued support of the students of Redemption School, Haiti.

A Special Invitation: On Saturday, January 19 at 10am,
Ken Carpinelli will be ordained to the vocational diaconate at Trinity Cathedral, Trenton. Carpools are being organized for those who would like to attend. Please contact Lisa Minerd if you would like to be part of a carpool.

Fresh Start for St. Peter’s Prayer List: A reminder that St. Peter’s intercessory prayer list will be cleared as of January 31, 2019. A new list, effective February 1, 2019, will contain only those prayer requests made or updated by January 31. Please contact Deacon Helen (dcnhelen@stpetersmedford.org) or Lisa Minerd (office@stpetersmedford.org, 609-654-2963) with any updates.

The church now has a text list to keep in touch with the parish! This will be used in case service times need to be cancelled for inclement weather, and to keep you up to date on any important happenings at church. We promise that we will not send too many messages–only the really important ones! To join, please text the phrase @1hartford to 81010. (Standard text messaging rates apply.)

Need volunteers to rake/blow leaves from the rectory. If you can help, please email John Colaianni – john.colaianni @gmail.com. Thank you.

The Good Book Club for Epiphany 2019 – Forward Movement, along with partners from across the Episcopal Church, invites all Episcopalians to participate in the Good Book Club, a church-wide Bible reading initiative. The Good Book Club will focus on Paul’s Letter to the Romans, with participants reading a section of scripture each day during the Epiphany season, starting on January 7, 2019. Several organizations are partnering with Forward Movement in the Good Book Club, including the United Thank Offering, Forma, Episcopal Church Women, and The Living Church. Partner organizations are creating resources or encouraging their constituents to take part in the effort. To join in go to http://www.goodbookclub.org/. The Good Book Club is free. You can download the reading list and read Romans for no charge. For an online Good Book Club webcast group go to: https://churchnextblog.wordpress.com/the-good-book-club/ . This online course meets on Wednesday nights from 8pm – 9pm Eastern Standard Time through Zoom. Dates include: Wednesday, January 23, 30, February 6, 13, 20, 27. Zoom sessions are recorded and available to registered students at other times, so you don’t have to be present at every class. There is charge of $18.00 to join this group through the ChurchNext website.

Thank you: Many thanks to our generous parishioners who donated more than 200 gifts for children served by Oaks Integrated Care and by Virtua Early Intervention. Oaks case workers were low on gifts until St. Peter’s donations of new Christmas toys and clothes arrived. Thank you for making a difference!

Diocese of NJ hosts Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service on January 21, beginning in Trinity Cathedral at 10 am. Honor the legacy and the memory of the late civil rights leader by joining your brothers and sisters from across the diocese to serve others. Following a special Eucharist in the cathedral, we will gather for a series of service projects that serve at-risk communities. It’s a fitting tribute to a man who dedicated his life to the service of others.

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