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Outdoor Services Cancelled

Outdoor Services Cancelled 1

As disappointing as it is to say, we WILL NOT be gathering tomorrow (July 12) for in-person worship at 8:30am and 7:00pm. 

We have been looking forward to getting together for so long, but with the increasing spread of the coronavirus in Jefferson County and under the advice from medical professionals, it simply is not the right time to resume our gatherings.  We will remain in touch with everyone about our plans, and Lord willing, we will be able to do this soon. 

 Please keep checking here, social media, and the Adventurer.  In the meantime, we will continue our streaming services at 9:00am.

One Day Inquirers’ Class | July 18

One Day Inquirers' Class | July 18 2

We invite you to attend our One-Day Inquirers’ Class on Saturday, July 18, 9:00-3:30 p.m. in Clingman Commons at the church (note location change). This adult education class will give you an idea of what the Advent believes and why we believe it so you can see if you want to make the Advent your church home.

Lunch will be provided. RSVP to Fontaine Pope (Fontaine@CathedralAdvent.com, 205-443-8562), and she will give you your box-lunch options.

Sign Up to Attend

Sign Up to Attend 3

OUTDOOR SERVICES CANCELLED

As disappointing as it is to say, we WILL NOT be gathering for in-person worship.  We have been looking forward to getting together for so long, but with the increasing spread of the coronavirus in Jefferson County and under the advice from medical professionals, it simply is not the right time to resume our gatherings.  We will remain in touch with everyone about our plans, and Lord willing, we will be able to do this soon. 

Please keep checking the website, social media, and the Adventurer.  In the meantime, we will streaming our weekly service tomorrow at 9:00am.

Sign Up To Attend

Registration opens every Monday morning for the upcoming Sunday. The service will be our familiar Morning Prayer service, similar to what we have been streaming, lasting 45 minutes.

8:30am Morning Service

Register to attend our 8:30am morning service

7:00pm Evening Service

Register to attend our 7:00pm evening service

FAQ’s | Outdoor Services

FAQ's | Outdoor Services 5

Resuming In-Person Worship

We hope you will find this FAQ helpful as we look forward to resuming in-person services on Sundays. At this time, we are not certain of when we will begin meeting again.  Please continue to watch our website, social media, and the Adventurer for updates.  And please refer back to this page as needed, as we will continue to update it with new information. 

As with many things related to Covid, we are proceeding while also remaining very flexible and adaptable.  We are conferring with physicians and others for guidance on our safely gathering again, as we are all aware of how things change quickly.  Please watch AdventBirmingham.org/Worship for updates, including situations where we may have to cancel services for reasons of weather or safety.

When, where, and how will we resume worship?

We hope you will find this FAQ helpful as we resume our in-person services on Sundays. Please refer back to this page as needed, as we will continue to update it. 

As with many things related to Covid, we are proceeding while also remaining very flexible and adaptable.  We are conferring with physicians and others for guidance on our safely gathering again.  Though we are planning on resuming gathering on July 12, we are also aware that the situation remains very fluid.  Please watch AdventBirmingham.org/Worship for updates, including situations where we may have to cancel services for reasons of weather or safety.

When and where will we begin to gather again?

Lord willing, we will resume gathering as soon as it is safe to do so.  We will remain in close touch with health professionals as we make our decision. As we resume face-to-face services, we will be meeting in our Porte Cochere Parking Lot – our horseshoe shaped parking lot on Sixth Avenue North. 

What time and for how long?

We will meet at times which are outside of the heat of the day, with the services lasting about 45 minutes.

Why the Porte Cochere Parking Lot?  Why not somewhere else? 

We considered a lot of options, but came back to the porte cochere.  Rather than going off-site somewhere, it is a part of our own property; much of the lot is shaded with trees; the porte cochere itself provides some cover for equipment; its bricked area provides a space that the officiant, lectors, intercessor, and preacher can use; it provides easy access to electricity; and we will not have to transport equipment to and from another off-site location.

Where will everyone sit? 

Everyone should bring lawn chairs – we’ll be sitting in the parking lot! 

What should we wear and what should we bring? 

Dress comfortably, given the weather and our circumstances.  The clergy and others who will be leading the services will be dressed comfortably (not vested).  Besides lawn chairs, please bring your Bibles, as well as water or coffee.   

What about masks?

Following local ordinances and guidance, everyone is required to wear a mask. Those who are leading the services will not wear a mask when they are speaking. 

What about social distancing?

Households may sit together, of course.  Otherwise, everyone should maintain an appropriate distance from one another (six feet).

Do I need to sign up?

Yes – when we begin meeting again, please sign up at AdventBirmingham.org/Worship.  We will have sign-up lists to avoid having an unsafe number of people coming.  

Where should we park?

We will keep the porte cochere lot and curbside along Sixth Avenue North clear.  Otherwise, there should be ample street parking and in the other areas where you might typically park when coming to the Advent.

What will the service look like?

We expect it will look a lot like the services that we have been streaming.  We will have our normal liturgies, with our officiants, lectors, and intercessors leading us in the services.  We will have a sermon, and our music will continue to be directed by both Fred Teardo and Zac Hicks, along with members of our choir and Refectory service musicians.  We will also have (we hope) a live feed of the organ from the Nave through the outdoor speakers. 

Will we be singing?

As we will be outside while maintaining adequate distance among households and wearing masks, we will sing as a congregation. 

Will there be Communion?

At least for the foreseeable future, we will continue to have services of Morning Prayer and not Communion. 

What other precautions will we be taking?

Rather than passing any offering plates or baskets, we will have baskets for your offering to be left as we leave.  We will not have coffee, water, or other refreshments available; please bring your own if you would like.  We encourage everyone to greet one another without handshakes, hugs, or other contact.  Ushers and greeters will be taking extra precautions as they hand out our bulletins and provide assistance. 

What about children?  Should we come as a family?

Though we will not have a nursery or children’s programming, our families and everyone of all ages are welcome.  We will have some coloring sheets for younger children, but feel free to bring snacks and activities that you think would be appropriate and helpful. 

What about the service that I’ve been watching online?  Will we keep doing that? 

We will continue to stream a service every Sunday morning at 9:00 a.m., which we are recording on Thursdays.  We know that this will remain a good option and necessary for many in our congregation, especially given our restrictions on numbers.

What if I am uneasy about coming? 

While many of us are eager to get back together, we do not want anyone to come if they feel uneasy.  If you are among those who are more at-risk regarding the virus, or have concerns about not maintaining proper distancing, we hope you will continue to watch our streamed service online.

What if it rains, or if there’s a threat of rain?

If it rains, or if the weather forecast for that Sunday is clearly forecasting rain, we will not have the service and will encourage everyone to watch the streaming service online.  This announcement may not be made until shortly before the service is scheduled to begin and  encourage everyone to check AdventBirmingham.org/Worship and our social media pages that morning, if there seems to be any question. 

What if there is a surge in Covid cases? 

Similar to our weather-related plans, we will remain flexible.  We are in close consultation with physicians and others.  If the situation changes so that it would be unwise for us to meet, we will let everyone know at AdventBirmingham.org/Worship and our social media pages. 

Backyard Bible Camp: 2020

Backyard Bible Camp: 2020 6

Backyard Bible Camp

Due to Covid-19, our VBS plans have changed! Since we are not able to meet on campus or off-site as a large group this summer, we are so excited to offer Backyard Bible Camp kits to host 3 days of fun with neighbors, friends and family!

We wanted you to have first dibs on a kit.  It will include materials to share the gospel while enjoying crafts, games, and a Bible story in your yard, driveway, or porch!

REGISTRATION IS OPEN NOW 

BBC LINK

What are the dates for BBC?

Registration will be open until July 10.

BBC kit pick up will be July 16 from 2-4 p.m. at the church under the porte cochere in the visitor parking lot on the corner of Richard Arrington Blvd and 6th Avenue North.

Church-wide BBC will take place on July 20, 21 and 22 when staff will be available for support.

How will I register for a BBC kit?

Registration links will be live and on Advent’s webpage under News VBS, as well as sent out via email.

Why do I have to register if I already registered for VBS?

We need you to register so that we can get the materials ready for you to pick up on July 16.

Individual participants do not need to register – only the host family.

What ages may participate in BBC?

Kits will be geared toward rising 4K-4th graders, but please include others of all ages who want to participate!

Who leads BBC? 

You – the Host!  You may want to partner with a neighbor or friend.  Perhaps your small group would like to go in together and parents share the teaching responsibility.  Some may wish to use this as an evangelism opportunity on your street and to include the neighborhood children.

How many people can I invite to BBC at my home?

We recommend keeping the size to a safe and manageable number: with 2-12 children and at least 2 adult leaders.  We encourage adults to wear masks and to practice social distancing.

How long should I plan on BBC lasting?

Plan on hosting BBC for 1.5-2 hours. 

Where should I do this?

For health and safety, all of the BBC should be outside.  You could host in a yard, under trees, in a driveway, or on a patio.

What if my number of participants changes prior to pick up?

Just let us know before July 16 and we will modify your kit accordingly.

Will I receive detailed instructions on how to lead and host BBC?

You will receive a LOT of detail, including a schedule for each day, how to teach the story and how to do each activity. We hope that by providing you with everything you need in materials and instruction you will feel confident to host BBC. (Also know you can modify the plans to best fit your home and style.)

What do I need to provide if I am hosting at my home?

You may want to ask each child or family to bring their own water, snacks, and hand sanitizer.  You might consider having some extras on hand, as well as access to a restroom and optional sprinkler or other water activity.

A Reflection from the new Interim Director of Women’s Ministries

A Reflection from the new Interim Director of Women’s Ministries 9

When the day comes that we use the past tense to tell our Covid-19 stories, mine will include leaving a job I loved and starting a new one. These are big decisions in the most “normal” of times, and throwing a pandemic into the mix is unique for sure, and that exactly is my story. I’m mindful that while employment, and the lack thereof, has been one of the nightmares of this pandemic, for so many people, God for some reason chose now to bring me to the Advent.
 
I have been at the Advent as the Interim Director of Women’s Ministries for exactly one week. I am in Deborah Leighton’s former office just past the receptionist’s desk. As many of you know, this is a returning for me, as years ago I served on the Advent staff as a co-director of Christian Education. I don’t have the words at the moment to describe how all this feels, but God has clearly been leading the way, and I don’t say that lightly. I confess to many times in my life when I had no idea where God was, and this is not one of them. He has brought me here again.
 
I serve as an interim because I am not qualified in a way that our next permanent director will be. What I offer is a lot of life experience, a love for the Lord and his holy word, and a desire to have the women of the Advent grow in their fellowship with this same Lord and with one another. I’m in no hurry to leave, and I’m not anxious about my future (strange coming from me!). I am eager to get rolling whatever that might look like in this given moment. Most importantly, I look forward to serving along side each of you.
 
While transitioning to a new job is part of my pandemic story, so is spending a lot of time at home. Frank and I are sticking to the social distancing rules pretty much. I haven’t spent this many daytime hours in our house for years as I have beginning March 13. There are two new homes being built directly behind our house and this has caused a huge increase in our bird population. Our backyard seems to be the new Grand Central Station for all feathered creatures. One robin even chose to build her nest on a light fixture which hangs directly next to the back door on our deck. She is perched high up, as our deck is second floor height, and the eaves over her are great weather buffers, but she is not happy that we claim the deck as well.
 
Frank and I have become ridiculous fretters over this bird, giving her the name Mama Bird and apologizing profusely when ever we must step outside. Frank even changed menu plans one evening because he did not want to use the grill. It would upset Mama Bird.
 
What we want so much is for the bird to trust us. To come to an understanding that we are kind and intend no harm. We want her to know that she is safe where she is, and there is no need for her to fly away from her eggs every time we step, very quietly I might add, onto our deck.
 
I wonder if this is a very small scale taste of how God yearns for us. I am slogging through the book of Jeremiah and the prophet tells us:

Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord,
Whose trust is the Lord.
He is like a tree planted by water,
That sends out its roots by the stream,
And does not fear when heat comes,
For its leaves remain green,
And is not anxious in the year of drought,
For it does not cease to bear fruit.  (17:7-8)

 
Jeremiah is telling us that for the person who trusts in the Lord, she need not fear the heat and the drought. Even in times of a pandemic, we can be hydrated and fruitful. The living waters provided by a completely trustworthy Lord sustain us and keep us. We have been intentionally planted, meaning that isolation, quarantine, bored children, economic uncertainty, social distancing, concern for our loved ones, do not uproot the steadfastness of our relationship in the Lord.
 
If Mama Bird would just trust us. If her trust WAS us, as we read in verse 7 above, she would not have to flee in our presence. If we would just trust the Lord. Why is that so hard? Well, hard for me at least.
 
It’s a bit scary to consider that the creator of the universe knows the full content of my heart. Standing before such knowledge I think I’ll make a quick exit stage right, thank you very much. Jeremiah has a whole lot to say about God’s wrath, too. But the awesome truth is that God not only knows my heart, he knows it and he loves me still. His plans for me are good ones, and through Jesus he has invited me into an unbroken fellowship with him. Jesus answered God’s wrath on the cross. I can nest in his presence, if you will.
 
I’m grateful to Mama Bird for reminding me of me. Every time she takes off when I open the door (we can withhold the grilling, but our plants need to be watered somehow), I consider my own relationship to the Lord, and I pray that he will provide me the trust and the confidence in him to stay right here with him.
 
In Christ,
Carolyn Lankford
Interim Director of Women’s Ministries

Advent Welcomes New Summer Interns

Advent Welcomes New Summer Interns 10

Advent Welcomes New Children,Youth, and Family Interns for the Summer:

Advent Welcomes New Summer Interns 11

Mary Allison Anderson

Mary Allison graduated from Mountain Brook High School in 2018. She is a rising Junior at Auburn University double majoring in History and Communication with a minor in English Literature. On any given afternoon, she can be found running, walking with friends, or spending time outdoors with family.

Advent Welcomes New Summer Interns 12

Sarah Hydinger

Sarah is a rising Junior at the University of Alabama studying public relations. She was born and raised in Birmingham, Alabama and graduated from Mountain Brook High School in 2018. She loves spending quality time with friends and family, summers on Lake Martin, and Alabama football.

Advent Welcomes New Summer Interns 13

Ryan Shamblin

Ryan graduated from Briarwood in 2018. He is a rising  junior at Alabama next year majoring in accounting and finance with a minor in sales.