Welcome to the Church of the Advent! If you are new to the area, visiting, or seeking a church home, we are glad you’re here and hope to have a chance to greet you in person. Please join us downstairs following the service for a coffee hour.

Child care is offered during the 9 am and 11:15 am services; an usher can guide you to the nursery.

Welcome cards are located in each pew; please fill one out so we can keep in touch.

The flowers at the High Altar are given to the Glory of God and in loving memory of Ellen Leighton.

The flowers in the crossing and elsewhere in the church are in thanksgiving for the wedding of Katelyn Emerson and David Brown.


9:00 Coffee Hour: Hosts this morning are Cassie & Jack Gurnon and Ray Porter. If you would like to sign up to host coffee hour, please contact Barbara Boles by phone, 617-501-7572, or email, bbolesster@gmail.com, if you’re interested or have questions.

11:15 Coffee Hour: Hosting this morning are Philip Clark, Gabriel Ellsworth, DJ Hatfield, and Angela Mah. We are always in need of more volunteers; to view the schedule of available dates and select a date to co-host, please go to http://theadventboston.org/1115-coffee-hour-signup/. If you have any questions, please contact Frederick Ou (frederick.ou@gmail.com), Roxy Hanson (roxenewu@yahoo.com) or Betsy James (ejames4@nc.rr.com).

Commissioning of Church School Teachers: It is a special calling to teach, care for, and support our Church School children. Today, following the Post-Communion Prayer at the 9:00 Mass, we will commission all the church school teachers, caregivers, and volunteers for our 2019-2020 Church School year.

Backpack Blessing: It’s exciting for our students of all ages, and for their parents, to begin another school year — new possibilities, new teachers, new friends, and new ways Jesus will show Himself to them and guide them. To mark this new year, at the conclusion of the 9:00 Mass we bless our students’ backpacks, lunch boxes, pencil boxes, or anything our students need daily. All students, from preschool through graduate school, are welcome to come forward to the crossing to have their backpacks blessed and begin the school year reassured of the Blessing of God over all their efforts in school, and to know that the prayers of their parish family are with them.

Church School Registration: We hope to get all of the pre-school children, grade-school children, and middle-school and high-school students registered for the Church School. Please see Meg Nelson, our Coordinator for Ministry to Children, in Moseley Hall so a registration can be completed for your child or children, and watch for more information coming very soon! We’re are looking forward to a full, exciting and active year in our Church School, which begins meeting next Sunday, September 15.

Compline at the Advent today at 8:00 pm. Join us for the ancient liturgy of Compline, preceded by Lucernarium, an evening service of lamp-lighting. We pray Compline, the service of prayer before bedtime in the custom of early Christian monasticism, on the second Sunday of every month at 8:00 pm in the nave.


The Rt. Rev. Dr. Carol J. Gallagher will be visiting the Advent on Sunday, September 15, to meet with the Search Committee and to speak with parishioners about the search process leading to the selection of our next rector. She will attend the 9 and 11:15 Masses and meet with parishioners during coffee hours.

Dr. Gallagher is the regional canon for the Central Region (the 56 congregations, as well as other church-related institutions, in the Boston Harbor, Alewife, Charles River and Neponset River deaneries) of the Diocese of Massachusetts. Before coming to Massachusetts, she served as assistant bishop in the Dioceses of Montana, North Dakota, Newark, and Southern Virginia. She has also served as the bishop missioner to the Bishops’ Native Collaborative, a consortium that addresses the educational and cultural needs of Native clergy and lay leaders. Before her consecration as bishop, she served parishes in Delaware, Pennsylvania, and Maryland. She is an enrolled member of the Cherokee Nation. She received the Louisville Institute Award in 2009 and was an Episcopal Divinity School Proctor Fellow. She has served on numerous church and civic committees and boards, including the Episcopal Church Council on Indian Ministries, the Committee on the Status of Women, and the United Way of America National Board.


Film Watch Party Wednesday, September 18, 6:30 pm at the Cathedral of St. Paul (138 Tremont St, Boston). Come view “The Last Dream,” a short documentary about families living under the threat of deportation, and learn more about how to defend Temporary Protected Status (TPS) and work for permanent residency for TPS holders. Light snacks will be served. Co-sponsored by Episcopal City Mission. For more information, visit the Diocesan website: https://www.diomass.org/event/last-dream-film-screening.

Advent 175: As of today, we are just 83 days away from the Advent’s official 175th birthday! In two weeks, on September 22, we will have an official launch at both coffee hours, with displays, exhibits, and treats. Save the date! Questions? See Deacon Noyes, or Advent 175 co-chairs Thatcher Gearhart and Maria Denslow.

Entr’acte Series: Christ and Culture Today. September 29–October 20.

This fall Frs. Welch and Hanson, along with Advent parishioner and PhD candidate in philosophy Nicholas Westberg, will discuss and debate Richard Niebuhr’s classic work, Christ and Culture, as well as the issues that the text still raises for us today. Christ and Culture is a clear, careful, and even-handed study of the ways Christians have related to the culture around them, ranging from total rejection to uncritical acceptance and various perspectives in between. Frs. Welch and Hanson and Mr. Westberg will present Neibuhr’s taxonomy and update his findings for our current situation in the Anglo-Catholic tradition.

Our history as American Episcopalians has been shaped by the most extreme ends of the Christ and culture spectrum, all the way from Episcopalian pacifists who were imprisoned for not taking up arms, to the more familiar (and numerous!) “Country Club Episcopalians” who, fairly or unfairly, have been judged for making a comfortable accommodation to their surrounding culture. It is important to understand these polarities as the culture war still rages around us and to imagine the distinctive contribution we can make as Anglo-Catholics, who interpret the question of Christ and culture as a subset of faith’s relationship to reason, and can therefore chart a middle course. For there is certainly truth and goodness found in human culture, but there is also distinct truth and goodness revealed to us in Jesus and the Scriptures that witness to him. And there is also the powerful and attractive alternative view articulated by Anglican theologian Frederick Denison Maurice of how Christ does not just reject or accept culture but transforms it in his own image.

These Entr’acte presentations are intended to be a conversation between the three leaders but with ample opportunities for others to join in. It should be fun and illuminating, so please join us.


Little-know facts, amusing anecdotes, and miscellaneous wisdom, in honor of the 175th anniversary of this parish.

This month, a new exhibit in the lobby display case is devoted to John Hubbard Sturgis, thanks to David Russo who has shared treasures from his private collection.

In 1874, John Hubbard Sturgis was unanimously chosen as architect of the Church of the Advent’s new building to be erected on the corner of Mount Vernon and Brimmer Streets. A devoted parishioner of the Advent, he married Frances Ann Codman (1837-1910), whose family were also members of the Parish — she was the first cousin of Robert Codman (1823-1901), who gave the bells in memory of his wife, Catherine E. Codman Hurd (1829-1892).  Sturgis was a member of the Corporation from 1874 until his death in 1888.

An early drawing of the Church of the Advent by Brigham & Sturgis.

Although his name may not be as familiar as that of other architects of the period — Ralph Adams Cram, H. H. Richardson — he was a leading architect of the 19th century. Pinebank, the house he designed for fellow Corporation member Edward Perkins in 1870, was “impressive, built of polychrome brick and stone, beautifully situated on a small knoll jutting into Jamaica Pond.” It was the first building in the United States to be built using ornamental terra-cotta. Sturgis designed the original Museum of Fine Arts, on the site where the Copley Plaza now stands. “The museum building was a tour de force of Ruskinian gothic clothed in terra-cotta. The materials … were unusual, and the connotation of the style evoked both Ruskin and the Victoria and Albert Museum. From his art student days in London to the end of his life John Hubbard Sturgis was spiritually at home in England, and for the Anglophiles who conducted the affairs of the Parish of the Advent, he was a perfect choice to fashion their new Anglo-Catholic building.” (A History of the Church of the Advent by Betty Hughes Morris, 1995)

September 9-15, 2019

Monday, September 9
3:00 pm: Beacon Hill Seminars Fall Kick-off

Tuesday, September 10
6:00 pm: Community Supper

Wednesday, September 11
10:00 am: Bible Study
6:00 pm: Healing Mass
7:00 pm: Bellringers
7:00 pm: Parish Choir Rehearsal

Thursday, September 12
John Henry Hobart

Friday, September 13
11:30 am: Rosary

Saturday, September 14
Holy Cross
10:00 am: Flower Guild

Sunday, September 15
The Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost
7:30 am: Morning Prayer
8:00 am: Low Mass
9:00 am: Sung Mass
11:15 am: Solemn Mass

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