The Advent Wreath is given to the Glory of God and in loving memory of Norman MacGregor Post, priest, and Jane Irene Post. 

The flowers at the High Altar are given to the Glory of God and in loving memory of Geoffrey B. Sayer.

If you are visiting or new  to the Advent, we hope that you will feel welcome and at home.  Please fill out a visitor’s/newcomer’s card so that we will have a record of your visit here and can keep in touch.

All persons baptized in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit are invited to the Altar to receive the Body and Blood of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. If you wish to receive a blessing, come to the Altar and cross your arms over your chest.

Child care will be provided for the evening services on December 24 and December 31.  The caregivers are in the nursery space adjacent to the Parish office and arrive approximately 15 minutes prior to the service.  

Childcare is provided for infants and toddlers during both the 9 am and 11:15 am Masses. 

9:00 am—Infant nursery is located on the first floor in the room beyond the Parish Office.  The Toddler nursery is located downstairs in Moseley Hall.

11:15 am—Infants and Toddlers are cared for on the first floor in the room beyond the office.

If you have questions or special needs we want to hear them.  Contact Meg Nelson 856-217-0847 or


9:00 Coffee Hour. Mary & Paul Roberts and Angie Corbet host the Coffee Hour this morning.  The hosts next week will be Barbara Boles and others.  New coffee hour hosts are always needed; please contact Barbara Boles by email, or telephone (617-501-7572) if you’re interested or have questions about what is entailed.

11:15 Coffee Hour. This week’s Coffee Hour is hosted by Michael Gnozzio, Alfred Duhamel, Kyriell Palaeologue and Roxy Hanson.  In view of next week’s schedule there will be a modest Coffee Hour after the 11:15 Mass.  We are in need of more volunteers to do the coffee hour. To view the schedule of available dates and select a date to co-host, please go to  If you have any questions, please contact Frederick Ou ( or Kyle Pilares (

The Last Gospel for Advent. Here at the Advent, at the end of the Midnight Mass at Christmas and on Christmas Day, we hear the Last Gospel (John 1:1-16) read after the Dismissal of the Mass. Its proclamation of the reality of the Incarnation seems particularly appropriate at Christmas when we celebrate that saving action of God. We borrowed this practice, though restricting it to one day of the year, from the mediaeval Church when the Last Gospel was read at the end of every Mass.

The text itself is powerful and familiar, which is doubtless why it got attached to the Mass. In the past it was read over the sick to promote healing. We learn from Chaucer that in his day it was read by itinerant friars upon entering a house to invoke God’s blessing upon the household. (Chaucer’s particular, unscrupulous friar was quite eloquent and also quite happy to charge for his incantation!)

Fr Jay Weldon, Rector of my former parish, Good Shepherd, Waban, called my attention to the custom of a Last Gospel for Advent. The Last Gospel is read, but it is not completed. Like Advent, itself, it looks forward to its joyful completion at Christmas. There is the usual salutation, but the response, “Thanks be to God” is not said until the Gospel finds its fulfillment at Christmas.

Father Warren

Today, the Third Sunday of Advent, is also known as Gaudete Sunday.  This is taken from the first line of the Latin introit for the day:  “Gaudete in Domino semper; iterum dico, gaudete;”  “Rejoice in the Lord always, again I say rejoice.”

You will notice that there are flowers at the Altar today and that the vestments and hangings are rose rather than blue.  This is a sign—just as it is on the Fourth Sunday of Lent—that the fast of the season is relaxed on this one day.  We, therefore, rejoice in anticipation of the feast for which Advent is a preparation, Christmas and its twelve days of celebration.

In spite of the well-known partridge and the pear tree and the eight maids a-milkin’, most Christmas celebration nowadays takes place before rather than after the day itself.  Earlier ages were wiser that our own and understood the value of preparation, though they may not have enjoyed it.  Witness one Advent carol from the fifteenth century which goes:

                                        Farewele, Advent, Cristemas is cum;
                                  Farewele fro us both alle and same.

                                  With paciens thou hast us feede
                                      And made us go hungrie to bedde;
                                  For lak of mete we were nyghe dedde
                                      Farewele fro us both alle and same.

                                  While thou haste to be within oure howse
                                      We ete no puddings ne no sowce,
                                  But stynking fisshe not worthe a lowse;
                                      Farewele fro us both all and same.

The New Advent Frontal & Vestments – For those who did not get one last Sunday or who may wish to have another, copies of the description and explanation of the new Advent Frontal and Vestments, together with updated memorials and thanksgivings, are available on the tables at the main entrance and the Mt Vernon Street entrance to the Church.

Gingerbread House Building—today, after the Christmas Pageant in Moseley Hall!  All are welcome, and the event is free! 

Can you help the Flower Guild Today?  After the 11:15 Coffee Hour (around 1:00) the Flower Guild needs help carrying all the Christmas material out of the storage and up into the Church.  Making one or two trips before you leave is a big help, but if you can stay one hour to help put up all the candles and assemble the crèche enclosure that would be even better!  

It’s that time again!  As we have done the past few years, guests at the Tuesday Evening Community Dinner will be given Gift Cards to Dunkin’ Donuts as their Christmas gift from the Advent.  This will allow them to go to a warm place and get hot coffee and something to eat during the cold months of winter.  If you wish to make a donation—and we hope you do—send it in marked “Donuts.”


Caroling & Cocktails with Advent 20s & 30s—Monday, December 18 at 6:00 pm—Beacon Hill:  All Advent 20s & 30s are invited to our annual Caroling & Cocktails tomorrow night, Monday, December 18, at 6:00 pm.  Meet at the Church (in front of the Brimmer Street doors to get music sheets) at 6.00 pm.  We’ll proceed to Tatte, on the corner of Mt Vernon and Charles Streets, to sing carols under the Christmas Tree!  Afterward, head back to Maria Denslow’s (33 Hancock Street, Apartment 4) for hors d’oeuvres and cocktails.  Maria’s cell is 617-671-9239.  Please bring friends and help us serenade our neighbors on Beacon Hill! 

Bible Study takes place on Wednesdays at 10:00 am in the Library.  We are currently reading the Epistle to the Romans. 

The Advent’s Beacon Hill Community Group meets every other Thursday to share a bite to eat, pray together, and extend a welcome to anyone in the parish who wants to explore what it means to call our parish Home.  The group meets again this Thursday, December 21, at the home of Ali White.  Currently, we’re reading and talking about the Book of Acts.  Contact Ali at for directions. 

The parish Flower Guild needs your help!   Decorating the church for Christmas is a lot of work, and the Flower Guild can’t do it alone.  We need volunteers on the following days; floral design skills are not required—if you can carry a bucket, climb a stepladder, or fill a trash bag, we can use you!  And if you can come for an hour but not for the entire block, that’s perfectly OK.

  • Friday December 22, 10:00 am to noon and/or 1:30 to 3:30 pm.
  • Saturday December 23, 10:00 am to 4:00 pm.  You don’t have to come for the entire day; any time you can spare is greatly appreciated. 

Next Sunday, December 24, the Altar Guild has many tasks to accomplish before the 4:30 Family Mass and very little time to do them in.  Anyone who can assist would be welcome.


A reminder that there will be no 9:00 am Mass next Sunday morning, December 24.  There will be the Low Mass at 8:00 am and a Low Mass with Hymns at 11:15 am.

Every year stuffed animals and infants’ clothing are presented at the crèche during the 4:30 pm Mass on Christmas Eve.  This year these donations will be given to the Fragment Society, who, since their inception in 1812, have been distributing clothes to Boston’s poor and needy.  They are especially in need of infant clothing and small stuffed animals to include in the more than 400 layettes that volunteer ladies involved in the organization assemble each year. 

A schedule of Christmas services at the Advent can be found here.

The Annual Parish Meeting is Sunday, January 28, 2018. Contributions to the 2017 Annual Report must be in the Parish Office no later than 12:00 Noon on Friday, January 5, 2018. All heads of committees or groups are expect to submit a report.

A Hopeful Path Forward:  A Christian Approach to Difficult Conversations, with Robert Bordone—Saturday, January 20—10 am to 2 pm—A renowned professional facilitator and conflict resolution consultant, Bordone specializes in assisting individuals and groups seeking to manage conflicts in highly sensitive, emotional, or difficult situations in corporate, nonprofit, educational, governmental, and cultural institutions.  His clients have included Fidelity Investments, Nestlé, Coca-Cola, Delta Air Lines, Microsoft, the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Massachusetts General Hospital, Dartmouth College, the US Department of Justice, the United Way, the International Criminal Court at The Hague, and the Vienna School of Economics and Business Administration.

Bob is faculty adviser to the Harvard Mediation Program, the Harvard Negotiation Law Review, Harvard Negotiators, HLS LAMBDA and the Harvard Catholic Student Organization.  He serves on the Board of Visitors for the Center for Service at Dartmouth College, on the Board of Advisors for the Center for Empathy in International Affairs, and on the Board of Advisors for The Systemic Justice Project at Harvard Law School.  His writings and commentary have appeared in The Boston Globe, The Los Angeles Times, The Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, CNN’s The Situation Room, WBUR’s Congnoscenti, and BBC Radio.

The four-hour seminar includes lunch; the fee is $10; space is limited so early registration is recommended.  For more information or to register, please email Deacon Daphne (


Returns for the 2018 Canvass continue to arrive.  

As of this past Thursday we have received 161 pledges, pledging a total of $450,164.   54 have increased their pledges by 20%, and there are Ten new pledges.  We have still to hear from 64 parishioners who pledged a total of $77,446 last year.

The Stewardship Committee thanks all who have made a pledge so far.  If you have not yet pledged, please do so soon.  

If you did not receive a 2018 stewardship packet in the mail, there are Stewardship brochures and pledge cards on the tables at the rear of the Church.  And you can pledge on line by going to the parish website and clicking the “Pledge Online” button.


At the Advent Book Store!  Advent Calendars, Christmas Cards, Christmas music; 2018 Ordo Kalendars and Pocket Diaries; all available at our Book Store.

Vestry Nominations.  Please note that several members of the Vestry, a Treasurer and a Clerk will be elected at the Annual Meeting to be held on Sunday, January 28, 2018.  It is not too early to think about members of the Parish whom you think would serve effectively on the Vestry.  A Nominating Committee consisting of John Higgins, Jack Gurnon, Thatcher Gearhart, Kara Rodgers, Father Warren, and the Wardens, Tom Brown and Paul Roberts, is ready to receive the names of those whom you wish to nominate.  Please speak to them beforehand to make sure that they are willing to run.  

Discount Vouchers for the Boston Common Garage are available for $9.00 each from Deacon Daphne or Nola Sheffer. You can find them between the 9:00 and 11:15 Masses at the Coffee Hour or Entr’acte. The vouchers can be used after 4:00 pm weekdays, and all day Saturday and Sunday. Questions? email:

December 18-24, 2017

Monday, December 18

Tuesday, December 19
6:00 pm: Community Supper

Wednesday, December 20
7:00 am: Organ Tuning
10:00 am: Bible Study
6:00 pm: Healing Mass
7:30 pm: Bellringing

Thursday, December 21
St Thomas the Apostle
5:15 pm: Property Committee
6:15 pm: Vestry
7:00 pm: Advent Choir Rehearsal

Friday, December 22

Saturday, December 23
10:00 am: Advent Choir Rehearsal

Sunday, December 24
The Fourth Sunday of Advent / The Vigil of Christmas
7:30 am: Morning Prayer
8:00 am: Low Mass
11:15 am: Low Mass with Hymns
4:30 pm: Family Mass with Procession to the Crèche   
10:15 pm: Musical Prelude
11:00 pm: Procession & Solemn Mass of Christmas

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