FAQ

After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. (Luke 2:46)

Frequently asked questions

If you have a question and can't find the answer on our website, contact us - We're happy to help!

Hover over or tap the question to see the answer

We Episcopalians believe in a loving, liberating, and life-giving God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. As constituent members of the Anglican Communion in the United States, we are descendants of and partners with the Church of England and the Scottish Episcopal Church, and are part of the third largest group of Christians in the world. We believe in following the teachings of Jesus Christ, whose life, death, and resurrection saved the world. We have a legacy of inclusion, aspiring to tell and exemplify God’s love for every human being; women and men serve as bishops, priests, and deacons in our church. Laypeople and clergy cooperate as leaders at all levels of our church. Leadership is a gift from God, and can be expressed by all people in our church, regardless of sexual identity or orientation. We believe that God loves you – no exceptions. (from "What we believe" at episcopalchurch.org. Click on the image above to visit the site and learn more!)

Christian life begins with the sacrament of baptism, the full initiation by water and the Holy Spirit into Christ's body the Church. Baptism is the outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual Grace. Through this sacrament we become united with Christ in His death and resurrection and forgiven of our sins so that we may participate in a new life in the Holy Spirit. Baptism is an important act of obedience to God's will and a sign of His love and adoption for the persons being baptized. Families that wish to have a member baptized should be members or intend to become so.  Click on photo for more information.

Very soon after becoming engaged, you should make an appointment to talk with a clergy member of St. Peter’s. By contacting the church early (preferably before choosing a reception hall), you can find out what is required by this congregation in order to get married here. Click on photo for more information.

The clergy and people of St. Peter’s extend their prayers and condolences to you upon the death of your loved one. We hope that these guidelines help you to plan a funeral service within the liturgy of the Episcopal Church that comforts you and your family at this time. To assist you, the priest has developed the following step by step Funeral Planning Guide, which includes suggested readings and hymns.
Click on photo for more information.

Do I have to be an Episcopalian to come here?

Everyone is welcome at St. Peter's! Whether you have belonged to another denomination, or you are just starting out in a church for the first time, or you are a cradle Episcopalian, we welcome all - the curious and the committed.

Please sign our Visitor's Book in the narthex; browse our table for any information that interests you; and feel welcome to visit with others after the service. Thank you for coming to St. Peter's!

Can I receive communion?

Anyone who has been baptized as a Christian is invited to come up to the altar, the Lord's table, to receive Holy Communion, or Holy Eucharist, regardless of age or denomination. Please let the priest know if you would like a gluten-free wafer. If mobility is challenging, the priest will come to you.

If you have not been baptized or do not wish to receive communion for whatever reason, you are invited to come forward during commuion to receive a blessing; simply cross your arms over your chest as to signal this request.

Are all three services the same?

All of our services follow that Sunday's Bible lessons and celebrate the sacrament of Holy Eucharist. 

Saturday 5:00 PM - Contemporary English; contemplative, without music; in our chapel.

Sunday 7:45 AM -  Traditional English; contemplative, without music; in our chapel.

Sunday 10:15 AM - Contemporary English; music led by our organist & choir; in our main sanctuary.

We offer Sunday School most Sundays, from 9:00-10:00 am during the school year. It is a PreK-5th grade multi-age classroom taught by our Christian Formation Director. Once a month (3rd Sunday), middle schoolers are invited to bring a sandwich and come to Lunch & Learn with Reverend Valerie from 11:30-12:30 in our library. We have a high school group called J2A that is preparing for Confirmation; please contact us for more info. (Click on the image for a Christian Formation Registration form, and don't hesitate to reach out with questions.) We periodically hold multi-generational events, like an Advent Workshop, which children are most welcome to attend with an adult family member, or activities for all ages to do before or after worship, such as for the International Day of Peace or Pentecost.

Children are encouraged to serve as acolytes during worship. They can serve as ushers with an adult or become lectors. If your child is interested in serving during worship in these ways, or would like to get involved musically, please contact us!

My kids don't sit still in church. What can I do?

Don't give up! We welcome children of all ages in our services and do not mind their wiggles or joyful noise. Our main sanctuary has a Pray Ground near the front where young children (5 and under) can play while still observing the altar, as their parents sit with them or in one of the first few pews. We have rocking chairs in our narthex where you can see and hear the 10:15 AM service. Parents are welcome to take their little ones to our nursery room (If there is interest we could start offering nursery care again). There are "Pew Bags" in our narthex for children 5 and up to borrow during the service, and pages to color. And there is a Prayer Station in the main sanctuary that children/families can visit to "light" a candle and say a prayer. We have a child-friendly worship called Children's Chapel on the 2nd Sunday of the month for ages preschool-Grade 2 in our chapel (children join their parents in the main sanctuary before Communion prayers).

We're glad you asked! You can weed a garden bed, host a coffee hour, sing with our choir, participate in St. Paul's breakfast program, serve on our fundraising committee or our vestry, or serve during worship: as a lector, Eucharistic minister, or usher. There is something for everyone to do, and we need many hands! Click on the image to go to our ministries page.

What do you have for older adults?

Many of our members are older. Find fellowship with them by staying to talk with one another after the service at our morning coffee hour following the 7:45 AM and 10:15 AM Sunday services, or by chatting after our 5 PM Saturday service.

What do you have for people with special needs?

We have a ramp entrance into our sanctuary for wheelchairs and handicapped parking on the steeple side of the church. We have walkers and wheelchairs available for use in the church. If you would like communion brought to you in the pews so that you don't need to come forward, we are happy to do this for you.

In the back of the sanctuary, there are hearing-assistance devices available.

We have gluten-free wafers available for Holy Communion; please let the priest know ahead of time so that one may be consecrated for you.

A Eucharistic visitor is able to bring communion to those who are homebound; please contact us to make this request.

Can I get healing or prayer?

St. Peter’s Prayer Vine members pray daily for the healing and protection of all whose names are submitted to us. Names are kept on St. Peter’s Intercessory Prayer List for one month unless renewed. To request prayer for yourself or another, please list the name and need in the binder located in the narthex or contact the Parish Administrator (office@stpetersmedford.org or 609-654-2963) All prayer requests are confidential to the members of the Prayer Vine and clergy.

How do I give altar flowers?

Flowers for the altar may be given for a donation in memory or in thanksgiving of a loved one.

Contact the office or pick up a Flower Memorial envelope in the narthex of St. Peter’s to give the name of the deceased and the date (except during Lent) or name of the person in thanksgiving.

The names will be placed in the bulletin and read aloud during the services. You may also set up this up to be a yearly memorial.

Who was St. Peter?

St. Peter, also known as Simon Peter, was one of the twelve apostles of Jesus Christ, and the first leader of the early church. Jesus declared to Simon, "And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church." (Matthew 16:18) When Jesus asked his disciples, "But who do you say that I am?", Peter answered him, "You are the Messiah." (Mark 8:29) Although Peter loved Jesus, he denied knowing him after Jesus was arrested, out of fear, three times. Jesus let him know he was forgiven after his resurrection by asking Peter three times, "Do you love me?" and directing him to "Feed my sheep." (John 21: 15-17)