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Update: Will Sledge

Update: Will Sledge 1
The Advent is grateful to announce that effective May 1 Will Sledge will serve as the church’s Director of Communications and Technology and will succeed Christa Cordova as Christa transitions out of her role on May 29.

Will joined the Advent in August 2019 as Associate Director of Digital Media. He is a native of Alabama but most recently relocated to Birmingham from Venice, Florida where he served as a church-based Creative Arts Director. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Auburn University of Montgomery and brings over 20 years of related ministry experience. Will is grateful for the opportunity to expand his role and looks forward to serving God at the Advent.

Will is married to Leah, and they have five children, Liam (8), Laiden (7), Livi (5), Lennox (4) and Luke (2). He enjoys the outdoors, music and spending quality time with friends and family.

Will’s role will include leadership of print and digital publications, the Advent website, technology, and strategic communications. He will continue serving the Advent community with Spencer Leffel and Chris Maxwell in the Communications Office. 

Please join us in praising God for guiding Will’s path to the Advent!  

Online Choral Evensong

Online Choral Evensong 2

Join us May 7 at 5:30 p.m. for an online Choral Evensong service.

Drawn almost entirely from Scripture, Evensong is the sung version of the Anglican Evening Prayer service and includes beautiful music and a message from clergy. The Cathedral Choir sings this service approximately one Thursday each month during the school year.

This service will be streamed online on Facebook Live, YouTube, and AdventBirmingham.org/Live.

We look forward to gathering with you digitally for this special service.

Bible Benchmarks: Lesson 7

Bible Benchmarks: Lesson 7 3

Advent Christian Academy is an online gathering space where children can grow in biblical literacy and catechism knowledge. The Advent provides three lessons per week that include a Bible reading from our Bible Benchmarks resource, video instruction, an engaging worksheet, and links to music from New City Catechism. These 30-minute lessons enable families to offer their children Christian education at home.

All Bible Benchmarks lessons are full of wonderful biblical instruction for all who engage with them and if you landed on this page, you’re welcome to proceed with this lesson. If you’d like to start at the beginning of the Bible and follow the series, click here to view Lesson 1 and follow lesson links on the Advent Blog

Bible Benchmarks Lesson 7: Genesis 12

I. Know the Bible! (Biblical Literacy)

Materials
ACA Lesson Plan
Bible Benchmarks Curriculum 
Your Bible
ACA Worksheet
A computer, tablet, or other device that will allow you to  watch videos with parental supervision

Step #1: Watch Introduction Video

Step #2: Read Bible Benchmarks summary for Reading #7 (Genesis 12 – The Call of Abram) found on Page 23 in the Bible Benchmarks curriculum. 

Step #3 – Read Genesis 12 in your Bible or with an adult. 

Step #4 Download and complete this worksheet

Cool Bonus Exercise: Watch this video about Genesis 12-50 from the Bible Project. It is better suited for older students. It has great graphics! 

II. Know the Truth! (Catechism Training)

Step #1 – Read the question below and answer below out loud. 

Question: What does the law of God require? 
Answer: That we love God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength; and love our neighbor as ourselves.

Step #2 – Listen to and memorize the song for Question 6 below. 

Stay tuned to the Advent Blog for additional lessons as they become available. 

Bible Benchmarks: Lesson 6

Bible Benchmarks: Lesson 6 4

Advent Christian Academy is an online gathering space where children can grow in biblical literacy and catechism knowledge. The Advent provides three lessons per week that include a Bible reading from our Bible Benchmarks resource, video instruction, an engaging worksheet, and links to music from New City Catechism. These 30-minute lessons enable families to offer their children Christian education at home.

All Bible Benchmarks lessons are full of wonderful biblical instruction for all who engage with them and if you landed on this page, you’re welcome to proceed with this lesson. If you’d like to start at the beginning of the Bible and follow the series, click here to view Lesson 1 and follow lesson links on the Advent Blog

Bible Benchmarks Lesson 6: Genesis 6-8

I. Know the Bible! (Biblical Literacy)

Materials
ACA Lesson Plan
Bible Benchmarks Curriculum 
Your Bible
ACA Worksheet
A computer, tablet, or other device that will allow you to  watch videos with parental supervision

Step #1: Watch Introduction Video

Step #2: Read Bible Benchmarks summary for Reading #6 (Genesis 11:1-9 – Tower of Babel) found on Page 22 in the Bible Benchmarks curriculum. 

Step #3 – Read Genesis 11:1-9 in your Bible or with an adult. 

Step #4 Download and complete this worksheet

Cool Bonus Exercise: Watch this YouTube video about Genesis 1-11 from the Bible Project. It is better suited for older students. It has great graphics! 

II. Know the Truth! (Catechism Training)

Step #1 – Read the question below and answer below out loud. 

Question: How can we glorify God? 
Answer: We glorify God by enjoying him, loving him, trusting him, and by obeying his will, commands, and law.

Step #2 – Listen to and memorize the song for Question 6 below. 

Stay tuned to the Advent Blog for additional lessons as they become available. 

Dean’s Bulletin Board 04.11.2020

Dean's Bulletin Board 04.11.2020 5

Not a day goes by during this pandemic that I don’t give thanks for Phillip Jensen, Tony Payne, and Col Marshall (see this recent article about their work on The Gospel Coalition website).  The Trellis and the Vine has been invaluable to the Advent in seeing that we were well positioned for COVID-19.  It was our hope to implement this kind of ministry in normal time, but God has seen fit to expedite things.  Click here to read about our Shepherds Ministry.  

When Phillip was with us four years ago, I received some negative feedback about his preaching and diagnosis of our ministry.  As hard was it was for me to hear, he was right.  Perhaps those who naysayed him then have now joined me in receiving the wisdom he imparted, albeit with some difficulty. 

Tony and Col wrote the book in light of working with Phillip.  As he doesn’t care to write books, the two of them simply wrote down what they saw Phillip do at St. Matthias and Uni churches in Sydney.  God bless them for it.  

If you haven’d read it yet, get your copy of The Trellis and the Vine at matthiasmedia.com.  
 

Multiplying a Good Contagion

Multiplying a Good Contagion 6

Advent Canon Matt Schneider wrote the below article for Matthias Media. Reposting with permission. 

As the entire world is affected at this point by the COVID-19 coronavirus, we can learn something from viruses in general about multiplication. Diseases like this one grow by multiplying at an exponential rate to spread broadly. On the flip side, multiplication can also be used to spread very good things at an equally exponential rate. So I am recommending we harness the power of multiplication by spreading a good contagion during this season of “social distancing” to combat the negative spiritual and emotional effects of the pandemic. 

I have been reaching out to as many people as possible right now by text, email, phone, and video conferencing. When I connect with them, I encourage those who are well to do the same by making a list of 100 people and reaching out to them during this pandemic. If only a few of us did this with 100 people and then told all of them what we’re up to, and they in turn made their own lists, we would spark an effort that could reach thousands, maybe millions, of people.

Since I have started doing this, amazing things have happened. Most are very grateful I thought of them, and some relationships that have been superficial up to this point are becoming more meaningful. Sometimes I pray with them, share Scripture, or explain my hope in Jesus with those who are short on hope. I have told many of them what I’m up to (both believers and non-believers) and encouraged them to make their own lists. Some have already begun to reach out to others and have told me it has done a lot of good.

I encourage you to pull out a piece of paper and write down the names of 100 people you know and are able to get in touch with easily. Texting seems to be the most rapid way to go about this, but feel free to use other means. Begin by praying for these folks. Each day as long as we’re in this pandemic (and beyond too) I invite you to reach out to several, ask them how they are, see if they have any needs, offer to pray, and be open to spiritual conversations even if you don’t think you know what to say—the Spirit will give you the words (Luke 12:12).

If they say they’re doing well, explain to them what you’re up to and ask them to make their own lists to begin spreading a good contagion that combats the emotional and spiritual fallout of corona. Many people—especially right now—are lonely, depressed, worried, and isolated. Some are single or shut-in and alone. Others are having a hard time being with their spouses and children so much in close quarters. Some may be tempted to resort to drugs and alcohol in order to cope. Some may contemplate taking their own lives or the lives of others. And many are asking big questions about life. God might use an ordinary person like you reaching out to completely change someone’s life, and the lives of many others.

This is what Jesus meant when he explained, “The kingdom of heaven is like leaven that a woman took and hid in three measures of flour, till it was all leavened” (Matthew 13:33). Yeast, like a virus, also multiplies rapidly. While Jesus warned against multiplying the leaven of the pharisees (a bad contagion), he promoted multiplying the leaven of the kingdom (a good contagion). We have an opportunity to multiply this good contagion around the world, and it begins with the simple step of making a list.

Canon Schneider will lead a group focused on disciple multiplication on Wednesdays, 1:00 – 2:30 p.m. beginning April 15. Click here to learn more. Email Canon Schneider to register. 

Sessions Begin April 15

Sessions Begin April 15 7

Join the Advent’s Canon Matt Schneider for online disciple multiplication training. This leadership cohort will meet on Wednesdays beginning April 15 (1:00 – 2:30 p.m.) to train in group facilitation, personal devotional practices, engaging people in our lives, developing a compelling testimony, sharing the gospel, following people up, prayer walking, and simple related concepts.

Email Matt@CathedralAdvent.com to register (and receive log-in information for classes).

The group will meet every Wednesday the church continues gathering virtually during the COVID season.

Bible Benchmarks: Lesson 5

Bible Benchmarks: Lesson 5 8

Advent Christian Academy is an online gathering space where children can grow in biblical literacy and catechism knowledge. The Advent provides three lessons per week that include a Bible reading from our Bible Benchmarks resource, video instruction, an engaging worksheet, and links to music from New City Catechism. These 30-minute lessons enable families to offer their children Christian education at home.

All Bible Benchmarks lessons are full of wonderful biblical instruction for all who engage with them and if you landed on this page, you’re welcome to proceed with this lesson. If you’d like to start at the beginning of the Bible and follow the series, click here to view Lesson 1, click here to view Lesson 2click here to view Lesson 3, and click here to view Lesson 4

Bible Benchmarks Lesson 5: Genesis 6-8

I. Know the Bible! (Biblical Literacy)

Materials
ACA Lesson Plan
Bible Benchmarks Curriculum 
Your Bible
ACA Worksheet
A computer, tablet, or other device that will allow you to  watch videos with parental supervision

Step #1: Watch Introduction Video

Step #2: Read Bible Benchmarks summary for Reading #5 (Genesis 6-8 – Noah and the Flood) found on Page 20 in the Bible Benchmarks curriculum. 

Step #3 – Read Genesis 6-8 in your Bible or with an adult. 

Step #4 Download and complete this worksheet

Cool Bonus Exercise: Watch this YouTube video about Genesis 1-11 from the Bible Project. It is better suited for older students. It has great graphics! 

II. Know the Truth! (Catechism Training)

Step #1 – Read the question below and answer below out loud. 

Question: What else did God create? 
Answer: God created all things by his powerful word, and all his creation was very good; everything flourished under his loving rule.

Step #2 – Listen to and memorize the song for Questions 4 & 5 below. 

Stay tuned to the Advent Blog for additional lessons as they become available. 

Bible Benchmarks: Lesson 4

Bible Benchmarks: Lesson 4 9

Advent Christian Academy is an online gathering space where children can grow in biblical literacy and catechism knowledge. The Advent provides three lessons per week that include a Bible reading from our Bible Benchmarks resource, video instruction, an engaging worksheet, and links to music from New City Catechism. These 30-minute lessons enable families to offer their children Christian education at home.

All Bible Benchmarks lessons are full of wonderful biblical instruction for all who engage with them and if you landed on this page, you’re welcome to proceed with this lesson. If you’d like to start at the beginning of the Bible and follow the series, click here to view Lesson 1, click here to view Lesson 2, and click here to view Lesson 3.  

Bible Benchmarks Lesson 4: Genesis 3

I. Know the Bible! (Biblical Literacy)

Materials
ACA Lesson Plan
Bible Benchmarks Curriculum 
Your Bible
ACA Worksheet
A computer, tablet, or other device that will allow you to  watch videos with parental supervision

Step #1: Watch Introduction Video

Step #2: Read Bible Benchmarks summary for Reading #4 (Genesis 4 – Cain and Abel) found on Page 18 in the Bible Benchmarks curriculum. 

Step #3 – Read Genesis 4 in your Bible or with an adult. 

Step #4 Download and complete this worksheet

Cool Bonus Exercise: Watch this YouTube video about Genesis 1-11 from the Bible Project. It is better suited for older students. It has great graphics! 

II. Know the Truth! (Catechism Training)

Step #1 – Read the question below and answer below out loud. 

Question: How and why did God create us? 
Answer: God created us male and female in his own image to know him, love him, live with him, and glorify him..

Step #2 – Listen to and memorize the song for Questions 4 & 5 below. 

Stay tuned to the Advent Blog for additional lessons as they become available. 

Family Sunday school: April 5

Family Sunday school: April 5 10

We hope and pray your family is connecting well and that you all are feeling the presence of God here in our season of extra “togetherness” in our homes. Our hope for these Family Sunday School classes is that they may help establish a pattern for family worship and spiritual connection that continues when life returns to normal down the road.
 

The following is a lesson structure that allows your family to have “Family Sunday School” together. Parents, we know this may be a touch intimidating, but it’s worth it. The following lesson plan should make it relatively easy to facilitate Family Sunday School as a group in thirty minutes or less. 

Preparatory Resources

  1. 3/3’s Method for Family Worship  – Canon Matt Schneider has provided this format to use as the structure for Family Sunday School. The first page provides some principles; the second page is the actual lesson. Obviously, you can pick and choose the elements you would like to use.
  2. Teaching on the 3/3’s Method for Family Worship – Canon Schneider taught two classes on family worship and the 3/3’s Method in our Faith and Family class in February. You can access these resources at the following links:

Class #1 – February 9 
Class #2 – February 16 

As you go through Family Sunday School, refer to the 3/3’s Method PDF. Below, we include helpful resources to supplement the method, such as music for the praise section and a video to introduce the Bible passage and series. 

Step #1: Look Back

Refer to the recommended practices in “Step #1 – Look Back” in the linked PDF above. In addition to prayer and sharing, this section includes option to sing songs, among others. Sometimes it can be awkward to sing a capella. Linked below are two familiar songs to Advent families with audio and lyrics on the video. Play it loud! It makes it less awkward to sing out!

Song #1 – Holy, Holy, Holy (Lord God Almighty)
Song #2 – How Great Thou Art

If you have younger children, here are some songs we sing in children’s chapel. We also have a playlist on Spotify with favorites from children’s chapel.
Song #1 – Ask Me Whooo: Questions 4-5
Song #2 – God Made Me
Song #3 – The Lord’s Prayer

Step #2: Look Up

We’re currently working through a series, “Trusting God in Scary Times.” Each Bible passage we study will relate to one key attribute of God that enables us to trust him in times of fear: His goodness, sovereignty, and favor. For Family Sunday School, we want you, as a group, to read and analyze the passage.

Over the next several weeks, we will go through a series, “Trusting God in Scary Times.” Each Bible passage will relate to one key attribute of God that enables us to trust him in times of fear. For Family Sunday School, we want you, as a group, to read and analyze the passage. 

Today’s passage, Psalm 40:1-10, talks about God as a rescuer. Watch this short video introduction:  

Now read the passage:

Psalm 40:1-10

I waited patiently for the Lord;
    he inclined to me and heard my cry.

2 He drew me up from the pit of destruction,
    out of the miry bog,
and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure.

3 He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the Lord.

4 Blessed is the man who makes the Lord his trust, who does not turn to the proud,
    to those who go astray after a lie!

5 You have multiplied, O Lord my God,
    your wondrous deeds and your thoughts toward us; none can compare with you!
I will proclaim and tell of them,
    yet they are more than can be told.

6 In sacrifice and offering you have not delighted, but you have given me an open ear.
Burnt offering and sin offering you have not required.

7 Then I said, “Behold, I have come;
    in the scroll of the book it is written of me:

8 I delight to do your will, O my God;
    your law is within my heart.”

9 I have told the glad news of deliverance
    in the great congregation;
behold, I have not restrained my lips,
    as you know, O Lord.

10 I have not hidden your deliverance within my heart;
    I have spoken of your faithfulness and your salvation;
I have not concealed your steadfast love and your faithfulness from the great congregation.

Use the questions below to dig into the content and use the questions in Step #2 – Look Up of the 3/3 handout for personal application.

Discussion questions: 

V1 – How did God respond to the speaker’s prayer?

V2 – Out of what did God draw him? How can you relate our present crisis to this place? Where did God put him after raising him up?

V3 – How did the speaker respond to God’s deliverance?

V4 – What makes a person blessed (happy)?

V8- How has God’s rescue of the speaker affected his feelings toward the Lord?

V9-10 – What has the speaker done with his story of God’s deliverance? Do you think we may have stories of deliverance to tell from this crisis? How is the sharing of the gospel like this man sharing of his deliverance? 

 Step #3 — Look Ahead

You can finish up the lesson with the content on Step #3 — Look Ahead — of the 3/3’s Method PDF. 

Click here to access this lesson as a PDF