St Mary's is sometimes dubbed 'Little Westminster' and said to be one of the finest churches in Kent. It has stood as a place of regular worship and symbol of the Christian community in Stone since the 13th Century. It serves a parish that extends from the Thames to Watling Street and from Greenhithe village to the M25.
The building, which is mentioned in many architectural and tour guides, is a hidden surprise to the many visitors each year who come to delight in its quiet beauty from both near and far. Known for centuries as the Lantern of Kent because of its position on the top of the hill overlooking the River Thames, it was seen as a sign of safe haven by sailors returning home.
It still stands as a lantern above the surrounding new development and can be seen from the Queen Elizabeth II bridge as one crosses the Thames into Kent. Its importance as a constant feature in the landscape remains whilst the surrounding area changes.
Safeguarding – find out more and what to do if you have a concern here.
In a time of plague
Grant, we beseech thee, merciful Lord, help and deliverance unto us who are visited with grievous sickness and mortality.
Sanctify to us this our sore distress, and prosper with thy continual blessing those who labour to devise for mankind protection against distress and pain: through him who both healed and hallowed pain, thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Worship at St Mary's
A normal congregation can attend Holy Communion and other services. There is usually plenty of space in the side aisles of the church so those who wish to remain socially distanced from others can do so. Hand sanitizer is provided and the wearing of a face covering continues to be encouraged.
Whilst the encouragement is still to come to church and interact with other members, for those at home Holy Communion will be streamed to Facebook on the first Sunday of the month.
Collections in church
We are now able to receive a normal collection in church as we usually do but covid restrictions have adversely impacted our finances over the past 18 months.
If you would like to make a donation to support the work of St Mary's you can do so via our Just Giving page. Many thanks to those who have already donated.
There is help for your daily prayers on the Church of England's website in the form of a daily 'prayer feed' which can be found here :-
We look forward to welcoming you to back to St Mary's now that we can freely open our doors once more to this place of welcome, prayer, healing and peace.
A place to meet and grow in Christ through worship, quiet contemplation, sacrament and encounter.
Christ is our cornerstone. We meet in his name and for his sake.
Whatever your background or your circumstances you are welcome to join the community which brings life to this beautiful and inspiring building that has served as Stone's spiritual centre for over 700 years.
Our ancestors nicknamed St Mary's "The Lantern of Kent" and it is our aim to be a beacon of light and hope for all in need, and in Jesus' name to shine out both the justice and the love of God.
Follow us on Facebook (St Mary's Church, Stone-next-Dartford) or on Twitter @stmarystone