Our History

St. Peter’s original church building

Founded in 1961, St. Peter’s Episcopal Church continues to be a growing church with people at all stages of life actively involved in the lay ministries and leadership of the parish. In particular, we have a thriving community of families with young children and active seniors who gather for worship, service, and fellowship.

Selecting the name for the church was very deliberate. The church founders recognized that the congregation was a mirror of the community. Selecting the Apostle Peter as our namesake was a deliberate choice.  The founders described their reasoning: Peter worked at an occupation common for his day.  Members of the congregation are a cross-section of the common man in Arlington: government employees, the military establishment, computer works, lawyers and bankers. They are like the “fishermen” of St. Peter’s day.  Peter was strong, aggressive, vigorous and even “physical.”  The new congregation is in the same mold.  He denied his Lord more than once.  Still Christ entrusted him with a sacred and awesome responsibility: to be the first Bishop of his church on Earth.  Like Peter, the new congregation has often denied the Lord but continues to be forgiven.  We are persevering in the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church. 

The building was extensively renovated and expanded in 2014. It has an intimate chapel, large open worship area, Sunday school classrooms, a parish/social hall, library, conference rooms and meeting space, choir rooms, a Steinway grand piano and organ, Memorial Garden, playground, and the church administrative offices.

Past and Current St. Peter’s Rectors (in order):

  • The Reverend Edward S. Gleason (1962-1966)
  • The Reverend Jess H. Stribling Jr. (1967-1974)
  • The Reverend Dr. Timothy W. Dols (1975-2001)
  • The Reverend W. Bruce McPherson (Interim Rector 2001-2002)
  • The Reverend Dr. Craig A. Phillips (2002-present)