Recent Sermons

The corona virus is preventing us from worshiping in person, but we are worshiping through videos including the sermons from the Rev. Andrew Terry. Links to all of these are in our blog on the left hand side of the home page of this website. They are in posts titled “Worship” and then the date.

Join us!

Worship for March 29, 2020

Sunday, March 29 is the 5th Sunday in Lent. The corona virus is still preventing us from worshiping together physically at the church, but we will still be together!

Our worship includes two videos:

  1. Deacon Karla reading the story of the raising of Lazarus from the 11th Chapter of the Gospel of John.

2. Father Andrew’s sermon “Where is God in all of this?”

At noon, we will gather by Zoom for coffee hour and fellowship.

This Sunday, March 29 at noon, we will gather together for St. Peter’s coffee hour either by computer or by phone.  Here’s how to join:

If you are using your phone, you can call in by 
Dialing 1 646 558 8656 US (New York)And then entering the Meeting ID: 808 626 584

If you are using your computer, you can join in the coffee hour conversation using the below link. Either click on the link or put the link in your browser.
If you have a camera on your computer, we will be able to see you.

During the conversation, we will share updates for the next several weeks including what we will be doing together for Holy Week and Easter as well as respond to any questions you may have. 
Then, for further conversation, please think on and pray about these questions:
1.  Where have you seen God show up even in the midst of the trying times in which we are in?
2.  What challenges have you faced personally in the midst of the pandemic?
We will have some time to share our reflections to encourage each other and learn how we can support one another.

Understanding Lent and Easter

The season of Lent began today, February 26, with Ash Wednesday. “I invite you, therefore, in the name of the Church, to the observance of a holy Lent, by self-examination and repentance; by prayer, fasting, and self-denial; and by reading and meditating on God’s holy Word.” (Book of Common Prayer, page 265)

The word Lent comes from the Anglo-Saxon word lencton meaning the time of year when the days grow long.  The season begins with Ash Wednesday and ends with the Easter Triduum (meaning three days) that includes Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Holy Saturday through to Easter Sunday. Because Lent is determined by the movable date of Easter Day, the dates are different each year.  This year, Easter is April 12.

Lent is forty days long excluding Sundays.  Since every Sunday is a “little Easter” celebrating the resurrection, Sundays remain feast days even during the solemn Lenten season.  The five Lenten Sundays are followed by the Sunday of the Passion (Palm Sunday), which ushers in Holy Week.

Holy Week, April 5-11, is when the church dramatizes the events leading up to and including the suffering and death of Jesus on the cross. It begins with the Sunday of the Passion, or Palm Sunday, and the joyous triumphal entry into Jerusalem, and ends at Easter.

The name Maundy Thursday, April 9, comes from the Latin mandatum or “command,” from the words of Jesus in the gospel of John: “I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another” (John 13:34).

Good Friday, April 10, commemorates the crucifixion o our Lord. It is know as “Good” because of the new life brought about by his victory of the cross.

Easter Day begins at dusk on Holy Saturday, April 11. Many churches observe an Easter Vigil service that marks the beginning of Easter.

Easter is a day and a church season. Easter season is a festival season of fifty days whose first day is Easter Day, the Sunday of the Resurrection, and whose last day is the Day of Pentecost, May 31. Easter begins after sundown on Holy Saturday. The celebration of Easter is initiated with the Easter Vigil, which can be observed after sundown but ideally is kept just before sunrise, so that the proclamation of Jesus resurrection comes with the dawn of the new day.

Easter Day is the principal feast of the church year. The word “Easter” comes from Easter, a Teutonic goddess whose name is associated with springtime, growth, and fertility. In most languages the name of the day is Pascha, which means “Passover.”

Symbols and Traditions of Lent:

  • Color: purple for penitence and royalty, or rough linen or a similar material, unbleached, raw, plain, and austere, to reflect the mood of Lent.  This is based upon the sackcloth of Old Testament mourning.
  • Ashes – these are prepared from the previous years palms used on Palm Sunday. The ashes symbolize our mortality and sorrow for our sins.  The people of the Hebrew scriptures put ashes on their foreheads as a sign of penitence.
  • Alleluias, joyful canticles, the Gloria in excelsis are omitted from worship and replaced with songs and responses that are more in keeping with Lent’s contemplative mood.
  • Vestments and hangings are more austere.  Flowers are omitted from the altar.
  • The Cross is a symbol of Christ and his sacrifice, love, redemption, atonement, and victory.
  • Stations of the Cross began in the Holy Land as a series of devotions along the Via Dolorosa (Way of Sorrow) and later spread to churches, where the faithful stop to pray and with paintings or carvings that outline Jesus’ passion. 

Letting Go and Taking On

Many people observe Lent by self-denial – giving up something to increase their awareness of their dependence on God alone.  This is often such things as sweets, caffeine, or alcohol.  Others find it helpful to take on a special discipline to increase their spiritual life.  This could be a reading a special book (often in a church class or book study group), a new prayer time and focus,  an exercise routine, or a family project that benefits the community.

Here at St. Peter’s we will be reading and discussion Howard Thurman’s book, “Jesus and the Disinherited.” Our discussions will be each Sunday in Lent following 11:00 am worship in the parish hall. Great food is also provided. Our discussions will also include “The Way of Love.” You can learn more here.

Upcoming Events in the Neighborhood

There is a lot happening in the East End! Here are a few of the exciting events and programs.

Here at St. Peter’s:

  • Wednesday, Feb. 26 at 6:00 pm our Ash Wednesday service with imposition of ashes.
  • Sunday, March 1 – Sunday, March 29 we will have our Lenten program. Worship is at 11:00 am followed by lunch and our Lenten study of race. We’ll be reading and discussing the book “Jesus and the Disinherited” by Howard Thurman. Read it online here. All are welcome!
  • Neighborhood food distribution program with Peter Paul Development Center is on the 1st and 3rd Wednesdays of each month at 8:30 am. Coffee and Bible study are also offered.
  • Neighborhood Walk each Tuesday at 2:30 pm. Meet at the church and enjoy some exercise and talking to your neighbors.
  • Worship every Sunday at 11:00 am followed by food and fellowship. A nursery is available.

Richmond Hill, 2209 E. Grace Street

  • Unearthing Buried Stories, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 7:30-9:00 pm. Join the Koinonia School of Race & Justice for this program that focuses on African American burial sites.
  • Lenten Retreat: In the Shelter: Finding a Home in the World. Each Thursday in Lent beginning Feb. 27, 9:00 am – 12:00 noon. Time for writing, reading, silence, prayer. All are invited to stay for noon prayers and the community lunch.
  • Pledge To End Racism Workshop, March 28 and April 4, 9:00 am – 4:30 pm. Workshop is an intensive, 2-day training sessions designed to help you learn about inherent, systemic racism and to give you practical strategies to help to dismantle it. Suggested donation of $55.
  • Volunteer Clean-Up Day at East End Cemetery, March 14, 10:00 am – 12:00 noon.
  • Check their website for more events and personal retreats.

The Market at 25th:

  • Their calendar lists all events including wellness, events for families including movies, and special events for Black History month.
  • Black women and girls art night, Friday, February 21, 6:30 pm
  • The movie “Black Panther” is featured at movie night on February 28, 6:30-8:30 pm
  • The Medical-Legal Partnership offers free legal advice. Office hours are Friday, 12:00 noon – 4:00 pm or call 804-517-9110 for an appointment.
  • Among many other services, the Health Hub can help you get glasses at little to no cost. Open Mondays and Wednesdays 9:00 am – 12:30 pm.
  • Virginia Public Media and PBS Kids – this page offers ways to connect children to PBS Kids’ resources, events, recipes and games.

Church Hill People’s News:

The website provides information on all areas of life in Church Hill – schools, redevelopment, food and restaurants, family events, and more.. Be sure to subscribe to their newsletter to stay up to date.

East End Public Library:

Programs for all ages each week: Book Babies, PreSchoolers, Toddlers, and Adults.