The role of St Peter’s – as with any church – is to serve as a channel between humankind and God. Our church building provides a sacred space where people can through private prayer and through the Church’s sacred liturgy hear the voice of God and communicate with the Almighty – to seek the grace of God, to seek His forgiveness for our failings, to seek strength to make our lives more worthy, to seek inspiration from contemplating the glory of God, seen and unseen, from the life of Jesus, to seek the protection of God for all creation but particularly for those who are close to us, to offer whatever of good we have done in our lives. Our purpose is also to allow the light of Christ to be seen by and shine on everyone – believers and non-believers alike.
The town of Marlow is at the hub of St Peter’s Parish but we also include the adjacent areas of Marlow Bottom, Little Marlow, Medmenham, Mill End, Hambleden, Frieth and Fingest. The boundary of the Parish runs along river Thames and the County boundary with Oxfordshire.
Neighbouring Catholic Parishes are Bourne End, High Wycombe, Maidenhead , Henley
St Peter’s Parish lies at the extremity of the Diocese of Northampton which covers the counties of Bedfordshire Buckinghamshire, Northampton and Berkshire north of the Thames. We are part of the South Bucks Pastoral Area along with the two Parishes of High Wycombe (St Augustine’s and Blessed John Henry Newman), Beaconsfield and Bourne End
St Peter’s is the spiritual centre for all the Catholics within the Parish. Sunday Masses are regularly attended by around 300 people.
TWO CHURCH BUILDINGS: The “Old Church” and the “New Church”
St Peter’s is unusual in having two church buildings on the same site. The parish outgrew the 1846 Pugin Church, so a new church was added in 1970. We use the old church during the week and the new church on Sundays. The churches are physically linked to each other by a door, but do not “open out” to one another.
The maintenance of the older building requires continuing attention and regular remedial work to counter the affect of age and weather. In recent years significant work has been undertaken on the roof and spire. The cost has been considerable. Public funds have been sought where they are available but the financial burden has fallen largely on the Parish.
The new building – though much younger – also needs a regular programme of maintenance. We are hoping to replace the roof and improve the heating system in the near future
ST PETER’S SCHOOL
The parish has a very close relationship with St Peter’s Primary School which was originally in the Church grounds but moved to Prospect Road in 1974 when the new School was built to accommodate the growing number of pupils. During term time Mass is celebrated for the pupils each Wednesday either at School or with a class joining us for Mass in the Church.