Core ministries

Acolytes/Cricifers
Acolytes are those who serve in the worship services. Our younger children, ages 2nd grade and up, serve as crucifers, who carry the cross and lead the procession in and out. Other adults serve as Lay Eucharistic Ministers (or LEM’s) and help administer the chalice at communion as well as serve as latinists for the prayers. Our deacon, Scott Williams oversees all of these ministries in the church.
Altar Guild
The Altar Guild are the caretakers of the holy things, taking care of the vessels and ornaments for our weekly worship services. They change the hangings and paraments (to vary according to the liturgical seasons). They set up for Holy Eucharists and other services. They clean up after service. They also polish brass and clean the chancel (altar area) to get it ready for high holy days. They are divided into four teams, and each team covers one week a month. Jackie Krass oversees the altar guild at St. Peter’s.
Angels
Angels are part of our pastoral care ministry. They are the folks that provide meals for people in times of need or transition within the parish.
Lay Eucharistic Visitors
Lay Eucharistic Visitors are folks who receive the consecrated bread and wine at the end of a Sunday service in order to take communion to those members of our parish who are shut in. We do this because

“we who are many are one body, because we share one bread and one cup.”

Scott Williams coordinates this ministry.

Music ministries

St. Gregory's Choir

This is our choir that helps lead us in worship every Sunday (while taking a hiatus over the summer). These folks work faithfully to prepare special offerings for Sunday worship, rehearsing every Wednesday night at 7:00pm. JT Anglin, our organist/choir director, directs this group.

The Hand Bell Choir

This group affectionately refers to itself as “the ding-a-ling orchestra” or just “the ding-a-lings” for short. They offer handbell music in our Sunday worship once a month (usually on the 2nd Sunday of the month) by playing tone bars. It is a light, ethereal music that suits our light, ethereal worship space. This group is directed by Donna Hutchings.

The Children's Choir

The children’s choir rehearses once a week on Wednesday nights at 6:00 pm, and they provide a special musical offering in Sunday worship once a month. This group is made up of elementary age children, and it is coordinated and directed by Debbie and JT Anglin.

The Occasional Singers

These are musically inclined people who offer their talents in worship on an occasional basis. Special offerings are provided by a variety of people once a month. This group is coordinated by Barbara Blanchard.

Magnolia Chamber Orchestra

Our orchestra in residence, Magnolia Chamber Orchestra, offers four concerts a year at St. Peter’s by-the-Sea. They also help provide special music for Easter and Christmas eve services. This talented group is made up of professional musicians and is under the direction of Tomas Fajardo.

Christian Formation

Adults

We offer many different opportunities for formation for adults. We have seasonal offerings, a Wednesday night formation offered from 6:00-7:00 (during the school year), two different classes on Sunday mornings: the Lectionary class that meets to talk about the readings assigned for that Sunday morning and a class geared more toward young(ish) adults. We also support an Education for Ministry class, a four year program that is guided by a curriculum published by the School of Theology at the University of the South.

Children

Children ages 3-14 have weekly Sunday school classes beginning on Sunday mornings at 9:15 during the school year. We also have some formation offered during children’s choir which meets on Wednesday nights. Once a year, St. Peter’s offers a Vacation Bible School in early June for children in pre-school – 5th grade. Our themes vary, but we are consistent in offering children an amazing experience in encountering scripture and God’s love. Debbie Anglin coordinates the children’s formation offerings.

Communications

Counseling Ministry

Our counseling ministry is offered by parishioner David Wilson who is a licensed marriage and family counselor. He takes referrals through the church office. He also plans to offer different enrichment seminars of marriage/relationships and parenting through St. Peter’s.

ECW

The Episcopal Church Women meet once a month for a brown bag lunch on the 2nd Tuesday at noon. They coordinate various projects and functions within the life of the church. They are coordinated by Dot Parker.

Fund raising

The Fundraising committee offers fun ways of raising money to support the ministries of St. Peter’s by-the-Sea. They coordinate the car parking for special concerts at Jones Park (such as Gulfport Music Fest and CPR Fest) which we affectionately refer to as “parking cars for Jesus.” They also offer other creative opportunities for fundraising at St. Peter’s. This group is coordinated by Vanessa Edwards.

Hospitality

The Hospitality Committee is responsible for providing refreshments for coffee hour after both services. These folks create an atmosphere of abundance and welcome that is a ministry under our New Comers’ committee. This group is coordinated by Kerry Hudson.

Ladies' Night Out

A social group of St. Peter’s by-the-Sea, the Ladies’ Night Out consists of the ladies of the church meeting to eat out at local restaurants once a month on the Last tuesday of the month. They are known for their fun atmosphere and for their affinity for choosing restaurants with happy hour specials on wine.

Men's Grillin' Group

A social group of St. Peter’s by-the-Sea, the Men’s Grilling Group meets once a month on the last Tuesday of the month. Most months, the men bring their own entree for grilling and adult beverage of choice. Once a quarter, the men enjoy special meals prepared by one of our talented chefs. This group is well known for its camaraderie and for the special projects they complete at St. Peter’s.

Newsletter

New Members

The New Members committee oversees the welcome of visitors and incorporation of new members into the parish. They train and provide the greeters for all Sunday services. They coordinate the delivery of gift bags to folks who visit and fill out a visitor’s card. They help coordinate bi-annual events to welcome newcomers to the church. This committee is coordinated by Carl Rackely.

Office Volunteers

Outreach

St. Peter’s by-the-Sea supports numerous outreach endeavors to help those in need in our community and beyond.

  • We fundraise for Episcopal Relief and Development, which helps folks around the globe.
  • We provide volunteers for Feed My Sheep, a downtown Gulfport feeding ministry, once a month (on a Monday).
  • We make sack lunches on the 2nd Sunday of every month to hand out to folks at Feed My Sheep while they are closed for the weekend.
  • We provide a 2nd Saturday breakfast for those who are in need.
  • We support Rebecca’s House, a transitional shelter for families.
  • We collect food for the pantry at Gulf Coast Community ministries to be handed out to people in need.
  • We are in the process of organizing a Getting Ahead in a Just Getting By World class and support system to help people move out of generational poverty (under the Bridges Out of Poverty model).
  • We provide new 6x girls clothing once a quarter for the Harrison County Children’s Shelter.
  • We provide Christmas presents, through our Angel Tree, for those who are referred to us through the Women’s Center for Non-violence Shelter.
  • We support the Honduras Medical Mission by collecting over the counter drugs for the members of the team to disburse.
  • Finally, we maintain a trailer filled with tools and work equipment that we will use for disaster response and recovery. Our deacon Scott Williams coordinates our outreach ministries.
Parish Activities

We offer suppers on Wednesday nights during the school year. We have frequent Sunday potlucks (often in between services). We seasonally offer opportunities for fellowship in small groups.

Pastoral Care

Pastoral Care is the structured way that we offer care for each other during times of illness or other major life transitions. The Pastoral Care Committee sends sympathy cards as well as birthday cards; they visit folks who are ill or shut-in; they provide meals for people recovering from surgery or childbirth or for families during times of bereavement. The Committee is made up of four teams who rotate weeks throughout the month. It is coordinated by Susan Pagano.

 

Property

 

 

Social Club

The Social Club functions under Parish Activities and plans special events for the parish. Such events have included pub quiz night, the Krew By-the-Sea Mardi Gras float, parade watching, and a crawfish boil. Patti Nicholas coordinates this group.

Stewardship

The Stewardship committee promotes opportunities for stewardship in the life of the parish and offers education about stewardship. We believe that stewardship is “all that we do with all that we have after we say ‘We believe.'” Our stewardship committee focuses on four areas for stewardship: relationships, time and talent, the environment, and finances. Derrick Hudson coordinates this group.

Worship

Arts Academy
Arts Academy is the after school art enrichment program that is offered at St. Peter’s by-the-Sea in partnership with Pass Road Elementary, Gulfport Junior Auxiliary, USM, and others. This program is offered once a week during the school year and it’s goal is to expose children in grades 3rd – 5th to a variety of visual and performing arts. The children receive hands-on instruction from a variety of artists from all across the Gulf Coast. Sue Cassady coordinates this program.
Flower Guild
The Flower Guild functions alongside the altar guild in helping prepare for worship on Sundays and special occasions. The members of the flower guild provide beautiful floral arrangements for the altar as well as helping decorate the church for festive occasions such as Christmas, Easter, weddings, and funerals. Christie Yoste coordinates this group.
Lazarus Guild
The Lazarus Guild functions with the Pastoral Care teams in offering care and support to families whose loved ones are being buried out of St. Peter’s by-the-Sea. The Lazarus Guild provides refreshments and other support for families and friends during this time of sadness. This group is coordinated by Audrey Montgomery.
Artists' Guild
St. Peter’s is in the process of forming an artists’ guild for our many professional and amateur artists. Our dream is that this guild will contribute to the life of the parish in meaningful ways as well as offering arts shows and sales through the church. Joy Jennings is coordinating this group.