Most Sunday mornings at St. Peter's have a several components that help us grow in love of God and love of our neighbor. Whether you are joining us as a visitor or as a member, we invite you to participate in our full worship experience!
The Episcopal Church is part of the Anglican worship tradition centered on the Book of Common Prayer. Over 80 million Episcopalians and Anglicans in 165 countries use some variation of this prayer book, and we are bound together in deep affection by our common heritage and common worship, adapted to speak to and represent each local community.
Our worship is a bridge bringing together the various Catholic and Protestant traditions. A Roman Catholic or Eastern Orthodox Christian would find our rituals familiar. A Protestant would hear the deep influence of the Reformation in the words we say. An Evangelical would find great comfort that our texts and rituals are shaped by the Scriptures themselves. A seeker would find that the liturgy gives structure and guides us through our encounter with God so that one can participate simply by being present, watching, and listening.
The Holy Eucharist, also known as Communion, Mass, or the Lord's Supper, is the central act of Christian worship on Sundays and other Feast Days through the year. Each celebration of the Eucharist includes three readings, generally from the Old Testament (Hebrew Scriptures), New Testament (Christian Scriptures), Gospels (accounts of Jesus' life and ministry), and a Psalm. A 10-15 minute sermon helps explain the Scriptures and connect them with our daily lives and growth in faith. We offer prayers for our own needs and those of others, and celebrate communion. Depending on the season and service style, there may also be music in the form of hymns sung by all and/or anthems sung or played by one of our musical groups. The order of service is found in a weekly bulletin and supplemental worship booklet.
Faith formation, or the forming of people as disciples of Jesus Christ, is a lifelong journey. So, we offer a variety of programs to help equip people of all ages for this journey. Worship is, in itself, a formational activity. On Sundays, we also offer opportunities for group and individual spiritual growth as we build a culture of discipleship. During the 10:00 am service, we gather children through age 10 for Wiggle and Worship. From the Gospel reading through the Peace we experience Scripture, prayer and worship in the choir room where we can practice a slightly more "active" faith! During the 10:00 am Fellowship Hour, we offer LIFE 2.1 (Living in Faith Everyday), our faith formation program for all ages. Through these weekly activities, we aim to bridge the church-home gap and enable people of all ages and stages to make faith and a relationship with God part of their daily experience.
There are two components of service at St. Peter's: worship ministry and outreach ministry. All worshippers are participants in worship. Some like to offer their time and talents to help prepare for or lead worship in ministries such as ushers, acolytes, Altar Guild, and lectors. We also take our commitment to love our neighbors as ourselves, and serve other members of our Freehold community through a variety of outreach ministries, such as Community Suppers and our Thrift Store. We take our baptismal vows to "seek and serve Christ in all persons" as a call to action!
Participants from the 8:00 am and 10:00 am Sunday services gather in the Parish Hall (through the double doors at the front right of the church and up the stairs) for Fellowship Hour after each service. Volunteers scheduled several times a year provide light refreshments, coffee and juice while people gather in conversation and formation. In the summer, we take the party outside with Lemonade in the Shade on the parish lawn. All are welcome!