Welcome to St Peter's
A very warm welcome to St Peter's Parish Church, Jersey, a church that has stood on this site for some 1000 years witnessing to the local community. You are very welcome to join us for any of our services, to use the church for private prayer or meditation or indeed just to wander around.
We are a church in the Anglo-Catholic tradition of the Church of England and welcome people of all backgrounds and traditions. Our work at the heart of the community includes very strong outreach to children and schools within the Parish including St Peter's Primary and St George's Prep. We also run adult study groups at various times throughout the year. We look forward to welcoming you in the near future.
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“Hope Springs eternal”
--- some thoughts for the time of year from The Rector!
During the last few months here in Jersey, we have had a very long and extended period of bad weather. Everyone is getting fed up with it!! But, slowly but surely the daytime is getting longer and night time shorter, and there are the first signs of new life coming: buds are forming and are evident in vegetation and on bushes and trees. The promise of Spring is not too far away. This turns our thoughts to creation.
It is a fundamental truth and almost goes without saying, that anyone who believes that there is a God, will accept and believe that God made everything that has been made. God creating creation is synonymous with what we mean by the word ‘God’. He is the source of all that is, and out of nothing he made all that has been made.
All of what I have just said, is so self evident, that all religious faiths, not only the Christian faith, accept the premise to be true, that God, the Creator and supreme ruler, made everything and everyone that is, in its entirety. People of all faiths can rejoice that we have this basic belief in common and celebrate the fact.
But there is one huge difference between the Christian faith and the other world faiths and it is Christ. Our understanding of who God is and what he is like, is that we truly believe that we see God through the ‘lens’ of Christ certainly, but far more than that, we know through Divine revelation, that all was made through Christ. Listen to these wonderful words from Colossians, one of my favourite books from The Bible. These are mind blowingly incredible words. Listen:
“He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; 16 for in him all things in heaven and on earth were created, things visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or powers—all things have been created through him…”(Col 1.15 & 16)
The ‘He’ in this deep, deep, letter from St Paul is Jesus Christ. The Christian faith knows it to be true that the absolute fullness and indeed totality of God came and dwelt within the very creation that he, God the Father, had made in the word incarnate, Jesus the Christ.
Hence, Paul says a little later on in v 19,
“In Him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell”
The same theme is there in that masterful prologue to John’s gospel that we hear every year at Mid-night Mass, one snippet of which says:
“the world came into being through him” (Jn 1.10)
Yes, through him………this means that Jesus was pre-existent, which indeed he was, for if all was made through him, he must have existed before time even began. Or as once again Paul puts it in Colossians,
“-all things have been created through Him” (Col.1.16)
All this, by deduction reveals another wonderful fact about God the Creator, for from it, we learn that God is absolute total love. He was not content to just make the Creation, but to seek to care for it through love: love become flesh, Jesus, and was revealed in his life and in his dying for us: a showing and revelation of absolute love. The God who we know from his written word, is ‘the one in whom we move and have our being’.
Jesus is not just the ‘image of God’: he is God become visible. This is the meaning of that term, ‘The Incarnation’ and the reason why we make so much of Christmas. We need constantly to remind ourselves, with awe in our hearts, of the enormity of what God was prepared to do for that which he had made, which was, nothing less, than to love it and us eternally, being even prepared to become a mere human being to achieve this.
As Paul said in Col 1.20:
“God was pleased to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, by making peace through the blood of his cross.”
This means, we owe him everything, not as an encumbrance upon us, but as a ‘Joy beyond measure’, to be lived out with thanksgiving before Him in our daily lives. Enjoy the Spring when it arrives and may it always remind you of God the Creator! God bless you,
Father Michael Rector of the Parish of St Peter
Note: All Anglican churches in the Deaneries of Jersey and Guernsey are legally in the Diocese of Winchester, but Episcopal Oversight and Care is exercised by the Diocese of Canterbury through the Bishop of Dover