about us

Since 1842, St. Peter's has served as a sanctuary and center of "Anglo-Catholic" spirituality.

A Diverse Community Seeking Christ

St. Peter’s is the parish church of Old Ellicott City and has grown into a diverse community seeking Christ through sacramental worship and serving the wider world. Our members represent a broad spectrum of ages, ethnicities, genders, sexual orientations and backgrounds who are theologically inquisitive and seek to grow and deepen their faith. Christ has called us into an intimate, inclusive community in service to the world.

Our worship style is traditional Anglo-Catholic; however, traditional here does not mean “stuffy” or “irrelevant.” During the program year (September – May) our main Sunday worship (mass) is sung with hymns and chant and regularly includes incense. This service is broadcast live on our YouTube channel. This service is followed by Christian Education/Formation.

We are a parish in the Episcopal Diocese of Maryland under the leadership of The Right Reverend Eugene T. Sutton. We are part of the worldwide Anglican Communion as a parish in The Episcopal Church lead by The Most. Rev. Michael Curry, Presiding Bishop.

Educating Our Future

Since 1973, St. Peter’s has been the home of St. Peter’s Preschool offering quality Christian preschool education programs for 2, 3 and 4 year olds.


St. Peter’s is an intimate, inclusive, mission-centered church
committed to involvement in the life of our neighbors
in Old Ellicott City and beyond.
We support all persons in their spiritual journey
and celebration of life through worship of God in Christ
in the rich Anglican tradition.

Meet Our Staff

The Reverend Derek H. Miller

The Reverend Derek H. Miller


Fr. Derek is our new rector and comes to us with a variety of experiences which inform his ministry with us. Having both a father and a grandfather as Baptist ministers, he later found his way into the Episcopal Church by way of worship, prayer, and study. He has a deep appreciation for liturgy and the Anglican Tradition. He even has a special connection with St. Peter’s, having been confirmed there to officially join the Episcopal Church.

Fr. Derek received his Bachelor’s in Biblical Studies and Urban Missions at Boyce College in Louisville, KY,  holds both a Master’s of Theology and a Master’s of Church Ministry from the Ecumenical Institute at St. Mary’s Seminary & University in Baltimore, MD, and received a post-graduate diploma in Anglican Studies from Virginia Theological Seminary. He has experience in church mission work and revitalization, faith community organizing and advocacy, and nonprofit leadership. His passion for community engagement and a vibrant liturgical life are bound together by a core conviction: God is always present and at work…and we are invited to join in!

You are likely to find Fr. Derek chasing his son around the church or main street while enjoying all that Old Ellicott City has to offer in the way of good food, drink, music, people, and all things wonderful. He currently lives in Highlandtown with his wife Kara and their young son, Easton.

Contact Fr. Derek at rector@stpetersec.org

Troy J. Lawson, Jr.


Troy Lawson is a Classically trained Organist and Pianist, with a
background in Jazz, as well as Music Theory and Improvisation. Troy studied Keyboard Performance at Harford Community College as well as Towson University. He has been professionally involved in church music since the age of 16. He has formerly served as the Director of Music and Organist at St. Agnes Catholic Church of Catonsville, and Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Catholic Church of Essex.

Troy is delighted to currently serve as the Organist/Choirmaster here at St. Peters Episcopal Church of Ellicott City. Troy directs our St. Peters Adult Choir and plays the organ at masses and evensongs throughout the year. Troy believes that music is an essential form of prayer and worship; and strives to joyfully lift the hearts of the faithful ever-so closely to God through hymns and choral selections that directly coincide with the various feasts and seasons of the Liturgical year.

If you have any interest in joining our St. Peters Choir, please contact Troy at organist@stpetersec.org.

The Reverend Joy Walton

The Reverend Joy Walton

Assisting Clergy

The Rev. Joy E. Walton retired from full time ministry in June of 2010. She had served most recently at St. Andrew’s School in Middletown, Delaware for five years as head chaplain. She returned to Maryland, her home state, to be closer to her family, including two daughters and three grandchildren.

Since then, Joy served for more than four years as an associate chaplain at Howard County General Hospital and, until recently, as a supply priest in the Diocese of Maryland. She continues to serve the church as Assisting Priest at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Ellicott City, in addition to now having a great grandson. Joy is also proud to be a daughter of St. James’ Episcopal Church, Lafayette Square in Baltimore.

Contact Rev. Joy at jwalton064@verizon.net

Courtney Spencer

Courtney Spencer

Parish Administrator

Courtney has served as an Old Ellicott City (OEC) advocate long before she became a part of St. Peter’s in 2019. She has strong ties to the OEC CommUNITY, as she grew up in Ellicott City, was baptized & confirmed at St. John’s Episcopal Church, is a graduate of local Elementary, Middle, and High Schools. Earning her degree from the University of Tampa provided her with a wide range of talent that has allowed her to excel in diverse roles as Director of Talent Acquisition/Operations/Legal Recruitment & Social Media as well as co-owning A Choice Nanny Referral Service and a Concierge Consulting Service with her mother. Courtney’s deep passion for helping people, unique empathic personality and commitment to caring allow her to connect with individuals from all paths of life and cultural backgrounds. After volunteering alongside the parishioners in the 2016 and 2018 Floods of Ellicott City, the compassion of the incredible, inclusive community is what lead Courtney to St. Peter’s.

Contact Courtney at parish.admin@stpetersec.org

Barrington Sweeney

Barrington Sweeney


Vestry and Wardens

Senior Warden – Doug Pryor
Katherine Schnorrenberg, Junior Warden

Class of 2022
Bill Rodney
Matilda “Patty” Schafer

Class of 2023
Stan Brown
Alexa Fair 

Class of 2024
Greg Busch
Jonnie Widener