Bicentennial plans underway at St. Peter’s Catholic Church in Libertytown, MD

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“St. Peter’s history is rich with stories that illustrate the impact this parish has had on the community.” – Ruth Riley, Bicentennial Committee Member

More than two centuries ago, the first Catholic masses in Libertytown were celebrated in a private residence. Today, St. Peter the Apostle Catholic Church in Libertytown, Maryland serves nearly 1,300 families with daily and weekly worship opportunities on its scenic 14-acre campus. This fall, the parish of St. Peter’s will embark on a year-long celebration of its momentous bicentennial anniversary, beginning with a festival in September 2022 and culminating with a celebratory mass and bicentennial feast in September 2023, 200 years after the completion of his first church.

The pastor of St. Peter’s Catholic Church, Reverend Charles Wible, shared that he was delighted to be part of this very special moment in the parish’s 200-year history. “Our parish anniversary gives us the opportunity to express our gratitude for the blessings of the past, as well as to hope for future blessings as we continue to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ.”

In addition to the events and activities planned throughout the year, the Bicentennial Committee has worked hard to develop an educational series on the history of St. Peter’s Catholic Church.

The historical committee scoured the local archives augmenting the content with recollections from parishioners to compile a series of articles highlighting key moments in the church’s 200-year history.

“St. Peter’s history is rich with stories that illustrate the impact this parish has had on the community,” shared Bicentennial Committee member Ruth Riley. For example, many may not know that the first memorial known to victims of the sinking of the Titanic is on the parish grounds or that its Sappington Hall was once known in Libertytown as the Opera House, the site of plays, theatrical productions and films!

This series will also include stories of how the entire community and region came together to help the parish rebuild after a devastating fire in 2004. The series begins in September and the public will be able to view these weekly posts on the website and parish social media.

To kick off the year of celebration, the Bicentennial Festival will be held on September 11, 2022, consisting of a mix of elements from the current annual parish picnic and the jousting competitions that were part of the annual tournament and picnic of Libertytown organized by the parish. in past years. The Committee tapped the Maryland Jousting Association to present an exhibit at this year’s festival. In addition to the exhibit, there will be food, games and other family-friendly activities at the festival.

Next year, the parish will host a special Mass and reception for the Bicentennial celebration on Sunday, September 24, 2023, which will be led by Archbishop William E. Lori, who is the head of the Archdiocese of Baltimore. The closing of the 200th anniversary festivities will be a special bicentennial celebration at the end of September 2023 with opportunities for the community to join. Stay tuned for more details.

Bicentennial Committee Co-Chair Alan Duke encourages the community to join St. Peter’s parishioners in this year-long celebration. He shared, “The Bicentenary provides the community with the opportunity to not only learn about the interesting history of the parish, but also to pray with our parish family and join in the festivities.”

The committee is finalizing plans to dedicate a special project honoring the parish’s 200 years of service to the community. In addition to several events planned for the bicentennial, the planning committee has commissioned the creation of a commemorative ornament that will be available for purchase throughout the year at the parish center.

St. Peter’s Catholic Church is located at 9190 Church St. in Libertytown, one block from the intersection of MD Rt. 26 and MD Rt. 75. For details on the church’s bicentennial celebrations Catholic St. Peter, visit http://www.stpeter-libertytown.org/200 or contact the parish office at 301.898.5111.

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