Welcome to St. Peter's Episcopal, Port Royal

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1. Newcomers - Welcome Page

2. Contact the Very Rev Catherine Hicks, Rector

3. St. Peter's Sunday News

4. March, 2017 Server Schedule

5. Latest Newsletter-the Parish Post (March, 2017) , Supplemental Newsletter (March, 2017)

6. Calendar

7. Parish Ministries

8. What's new on the website Feb. 28, 2017

9. Latest Photo Galleries 

10. Latest Bulletin (Mar 1, 2017 7pm) & Sermon (Feb.26 2017)

Jan. 15, 2017    
11. Recent Services:

Feb. 5, Epiphany 5

Photos from Epiphany 5

Feb. 12, Epiphany 6

Photos from Epiphany 6

Feb. 19, Epiphany 7

Photos from Epiphany 7

Mike Newmans Block print of St. Peter's Christmas

 Block Print by Mike Newman


to the reports from Jan 15 Annual Meeting


Daily "Day by Day"

Follow the Star

Daily meditations in words and music.  

Sacred Space

Your daily prayer online, since 1999

"We invite you to make a 'Sacred Space' in your day, praying here and now, as you visit our website, with the help of scripture chosen every day and on-screen guidance."

Daily C. S. Lewis thoughts

Saints of the Week, Feb. 26 - March 5

[Emily Malbone Morgan, Prophetic Witness, 1937]
George Herbert, Priest, 1633
[Anna Julia Haywood Cooper, 1964, and Elizabeth Evelyn Wright, 1904,
David, Bishop of Menevia, Wales, c. 544
Chad, Bishop of Lichfield, 672
John and Charles Wesley, Priests, 1791, 1788
[Paul Cuffee, Witness to the Faith among the Shinnecock, 1812]

March 1 - LENT begins 

March 1 - 10:00, Ecumenical Bible Study

March 1 - 5:00pm, Village Dinner

March 1 - 7:00pm, Ash Wednesday service

March 5 - 10:00am, Christian Ed - Godly Play (preschool through 2nd grade) 

March 5 - 10:00am, Christian Ed - Five Marks of Love  (children 3rd grade and up, adults

March 5  - 11:00am, Holy Eucharist, Rite II

March 5  - 12:00pm, First Sunday Social

Village Harvest, March, 2017


For our March It is white paper month! Please the essential papers - paper towels, toilet paper and/or tissues by March 13.


Sunday,  March 5, Readings and Servers

Lent Begins March 1

  Lent is a 40 day Christian festival beginning Ash Wednesday and concluding on Easter (Sundays are not counted).  The 40 day fast of Jesus in the wilderness was responsible for the number 40 being chosen .  It was said by Athanasius in 339 AD to be celebrated the world over.  

The word "Lent" comes from the old Anglo-Saxon word lengten, which means "springtime," named so for the time of the year in which it occurs.   The five Lenten Sundays are followed by the Sunday of the Passion, Palm Sunday, which begins Holy Week, when we relive the events of Jesus Christ’s suffering and death.  

What we now call Lent was originally a period of fasting and study for catechumens who were to be baptized on the Saturday before Easter.  The purpose of this extended fast was to practice self-denial and humility. This was to prepare oneself for receiving God's grace and forgiveness in baptism, given on Easter Saturday or Easter Sunday.

Lent is:

• A time for looking at the things we do that are wrong or that tempt us, asking God’s and other people’s forgiveness;
• A time for giving up things that keep us from being loving people;
• A time for doing extra things that will help us grow closer to God;
• A time to be more aware of what it means to love as God loves us;
• A time to ask God to help us to be more loving, remembering
that God is always ready to strengthen us.

We have a dedicated Lenten part of the website - Lent at St. Peter's 2017  which a number of resources:  


Highlights include:

If this is not enough, we have other links to various Lenten resources

Our "Lenten Reboot" video

Link to the Youtube video. It is only lasts a minute.

Returning to the Sacred Presence

 "One of the greatest theologians the world has ever known, St. Augustine of Hippo (354-430), wrote about his prolonged, drawn-out search for God and the revelation he finally had that God had been with him all along: 

"I have learnt to love you late, Beauty at once so ancient and so new! I have learnt to love you late! You were within me, and I was in the world outside myself. I searched for you outside myself.... You were with me, but I was not with you."

Confessions, Book X.27, St. Augustine

"Waking to the reality of this very present Eternal Life, this "Beauty ever ancient, ever new," is a transforming experience. This life-giving Presence is always with us and within us. The problem, of course, is that we are often distracted by many cares and occupations that keep us far away from God and from ourselves. It is as if we spend much of our lives wandering "in a land that is waste," while God constantly calls to us to return--to ourselves, to our true life in God.

"The forty days of Lent serve as a time for Christians to return to the Sacred Presence, to the God who has never left us, even though at times we have been far away. Lent is a time to renew classic disciplines of prayer and reflection, as well as ancient practices such as fasting and Bible study. All of this is designed to renew a right spirit within us and to prepare us for the events of Jesus' death and resurrection at Easter."

‐The Rev. Gary Jones, St. Stephens, Richmond

Ash Wednesday, March 1 and the beginning of Lent

We begin our observation of Jesus’ death and resurrection by preparing for Easter with a season of penitence.  At this service, we receive ashes on our foreheads in the shape of a cross to remind us of our mortality, and complete dependence on God for our lives.   Only through God’s saving grace can be we be in a relationship with God.   This service offers a way in which we can come together to consider our ongoing need for God’s salvation in our lives, both individually and as a community.

For more information on Ash Wednesday see this link

"Ash Wednesday",  a Poem

This Lent I am not thinking What to say
Except one by one by one
I will come by the words
Like the greening sprung
From the ground
From the seeming dead layers
Of wet rotting leaves
Under the snow
This Lent
I am arriving
No words prepared
A discipline in itself
I will hear what is new
Perhaps what I’ve heard
But new of course
And sprung
From the ground

—Catharine Phillips February 6, 2008

5 Mark of Love begins Feb 26

The series starts on the Sunday before Ash Wednesday, February 26. The videos and activity for the week are intended as a starting point, hopefully setting the table and getting folks in the swing of the rhythm of the series and starting some thoughts and reflections.  We have an excerpt below:

By Br. David Vryhof

Sign up for daily messages/videos

Read the first day's message and watch the video

"In 1984, the Anglican Communion identified Five Marks of Mission – five activities that are characteristic of the work of the Church in the world. These are really five characteristics of God’s mission in the world, because God is mission and all mission originates from God and from God’s love. The Five Marks of Mission that the Anglican Church identified were: first, proclaiming the good news of the Kingdom of God; second, teaching, baptizing, and nurturing new believers; third, responding to human need by loving service; fourth, transforming unjust structures, challenging violence of every kind, and pursuing peace and reconciliation; and fifth, striving to safeguard the integrity of creation and sustaining and renewing the life of the earth.

"We’ll be taking each of these Marks of Mission and spending a week kind of spinning them out and reflecting on them. But before we do that, this week will be a week of introduction in which we will just talk about the nature of mission, to underscore that mission comes from God. It’s God’s mission, not the Church’s mission. It’s God’s mission. And the Church, Christians, believers, are invited to participate in that mission and carry out that mission with God. But it is God who initiates and God who leads the mission."

The Lenten Gospel Readings- the Path Ahead

Lent has five Sunday plus Palm Sunday.

Except for Lent 1, all of the Gospel readings come from the Gospel of John, specifically the second part Book of Signs (Jn 1.19-12.50).  Palm Sunday has its own readings. 

The second Sunday through the fifth has Jesus confronting various characters – a educated Pharisee, a Samaritan Women, a blind man and a man recently deceased.  These texts from John are about revelation--the revelation of who Jesus is, the one sent by God, the begotten God, whose offer of life is in his presence and not necessarily delayed until his death.

The key is in the dialogues that the characters try to understand Jesus from their own backgrounds. Is he who he says he is ? How does he challenge Jewis teachings in the past ?

Along the way, it deals with man’s constant temptations and limits vs. Jesus as the source of light and eternal life.  Jesus does make himself known in a significant way.  It shows the power and glory of Christ and how humans confront it .

Are they going to find themselves within Christ ?  Ultimately, how are we finding our way through Christ ? Will we recognize him? Will we witness for him? Will we see him and worship him? Will we come when we hear him call our names? Will we move as these stories show from darkness to light, from insecurity to testimony, from blindness to sight, from death to life?  Here are the Sundays:

First Sunday of Lent: The Temptation of Jesus, following upon the account of Jesus’ own baptism, is a vivid reminder that our baptismal life is similar to Christ’s life: we will be subject to trial and temptation.

Second Sunday of Lent: The Story of Nicodemus , the Pharisee never understood the significance of Christ beyond the miracles despite his education. To stand accepted before God requires a conversion of one's whole being. It requires being born from above, washed new by the Spirit of God.

Third Sunday of Lent: In the story of The Samaritan Woman the gradual enlightenment of the woman by Jesus is a pattern of baptismal grace that steadily purifies and enlightens us.

Fourth Sunday of Lent: The Man Born Blind shows the power of God offered to cure a helpless blind man. God’s power is no less evident in the sacrament of baptism.

Fifth Sunday of Lent: Raising of Lazarus is a powerful reminder that Christ is the "resurrection and the life" and those who believe in him will have eternal life.

Indeed the continual revelation of Jesus becomes a reason why the authorities conclude he is a dangerous man that needs to be dealt with in Holy Week.

 Lectionary, March 5, Lent One

I.Theme -   Dealing with Sin and Temptation

Duccio di Buoninsegna - "Temptation of Christ on the Mountain" (1308-11)

The lectionary readings are here  or individually: 

Old Testament - Genesis 2:15-17; 3:1-7 
Psalm - Psalm 32 
Epistle -Romans 5:12-19 
Gospel - Matthew 4:1-11 

One key word this week is “Sin” and it fits in well with Lent. We remember Jesus 40 day fast and resulting temptation by the devil this week. Jesus passed the "test" and resisted temptation.  Do we ? Lent is a special time of prayer, penance, sacrifice and good works in preparation of the celebration of Easter.  

As we begin Lent, let's start at the very beginning and consider why we need to go on this trip in the first place.

What does it mean to be human ? From the Genesis story of Adam and Eve's fall from grace, through Paul's exploration of how Jesus functions as a "second Adam," to Matthew's portrayal of Jesus' temptation in the wilderness, these readings cut to the chase of what it is to be human. 

The other key word this week is "temptation."  As  Brian Stoffregen writes  “ Wherever it comes, the tempter/tester does not have the power to make someone do something. Temptation is not coercion. The serpent in the garden didn't make Eve and Adam eat the apple. The devil in our text can't make Jesus turn stones into bread. "To tempt" means to try and convince someone to do something. It means enticing someone to want to do something. Tempters can't make someone do something bad, but try to make the temptee want to do something bad. They don't take away the will. Rather, they try to change one's will."

"The way [the devil] seeks to change our wills is by lying, by stretching the truth. Generally, [the devil] entices us not to do great evil acts, but to good things for the wrong reasons. It could be argued that none of Jesus' temptations were to do anything grossly evil, but to do good things for the wrong reasons or at the wrong time."

In essence we need a relationship with God living not by our own whims but by God's limits.  We are also tempted to be self-succient in Genesis by eating of the tree of knowledge as Jesus is tempted to be self sufficient in turning stone into bread, cheating death and controlling the whole world. We are insufficient, We are not complete in and of ourselves, that lack is a permanent part of our condition.

There is more to it as David Lose maintains. "Rather, to be human is to accept that we are, finally, created for relationship with God and with each other. Perhaps the goal of the life of faith isn't to escape limitation but to discover God amid our needs and learn, with Paul, that God's grace is sufficient for us."

Lose continues, "Perhaps faith, that is, doesn't do away with the hardships that are part and parcel of this life, but rather gives us the courage to stand amid them, not simply surviving but actually flourishing in and through Jesus, the one who was tempted as we are and thereby knows our struggles first hand. This same Jesus now invites us to find both hope and courage in the God who named not only him, but all of us, beloved children so that we, also, might discover who we are be recalling whose we are." 

Read more from the lectionary

 40 Years Alone in the Woods

National Geographic Link

Jesus spent 40 days in the desert in a fast. Billy Barr has spent 40 years in the woods, creating valuable data on snows.

Welcome to Gothic, Colorado—one of the coldest places in the United States. This ghost town has been abandoned since the 1920s, but there is at least one person who still calls it home. For more than 40 years, current resident billy barr has lived in a small cabin, recording data about the snowpack to pass the time. In this short film, Morgan Heim of Day’s Edge Productions profiles the legendary local who inadvertently provided scientists with a treasure trove of climate change data.

Feb. 26 -Last Sunday after the Epiphany  

Raphael's "Transfiguration". Read more about this painting 

From Last week... 

Sunday, February 26,  Epiphany 7   


St. Peter's Church 823 Water Street  P. O. Box 399 Port Royal, Virginia 22535  804-742-5908.  Reverend Catherine D. Hicks, Priest-in-Charge, stpetersrev@gmail.com;    Site Map