In the mid-1990’s, after casino gaming came to the Mississippi Gulf Coast waterfront, the Grand Casino was built directly across Beach Boulevard from St. Peter’s. In 1997, as the Grand sought to expand, it purchased the church property at West Beach and 31st Avenue, necessitating another move for the parish. The casino’s purchase of the property proved fortuitous for St. Peter’s because a group of parish leaders called the “Next Step Committee” had been considering for several years the possibility of moving from a structure that was deteriorating along with the surrounding neighborhood. With the Grand’s serious offer to purchase the property, the “Next Step” group quickly became the Building Committee and set about looking for a new location.
They found the perfect site ten blocks away, and a beautiful new, Carpenter Gothic style structure was designed by well-known New Orleans architect to be built at 1912 East Beach Boulevard.
What a beautiful place for my girls to get married!
said the mother of two young daughters at the ground breaking.
On June 25, 2000, the Rt. Rev. A.C. Marble, eighth Bishop of Mississippi, consecrated St. Peter’s by-the-Sea the Third, again built by the George P. Hopkins general contracting firm – this time with George P. Hopkins, Jr. at the head and son George P. Hopkins, III as assistant. Eight stained glass windows, designed by Jackson, Mississippi stained glass artist Andrew Carey Young, to depict major events in the life of St. Peter, lined the church Nave on the Epistle and Gospel sides. Above them large Gothic-shaped clear glass windows admitted radiant sunlight, leading the then rector to quip: “Need we no created light,” a line from an Epiphany hymn. The “new” St. Peter’s was featured in highly respected architectural publications, and also in a sketchbook of Barron’s architectural works and watercolors.