Welcome to The Advent.
This is how we live our life, and we’d love for you to join us.
Interested in Visiting on a Sunday?
A service at The Advent is best discovered individually and experienced as a community. There are many parts to what we embrace as a gathered body. Those in attendance at any of the Masses choose to engage with the service in a way that is comfortable for them. Many choose to arrive early to allow time to quiet their minds from the world outside. It is here when we anticipate what is to come. As we enter into the mystery that is the ever-living grace and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ, join and follow as you see fit.
On your Christian journey, we seek to support your search for a community you can call home
Where do our customs come from?
Our worship reflects our foundation in the tradition of the Oxford Movement, which began in the 1830s when several Church of England clergy started a renewal in reaction to what they perceived as laxity and spiritual lifelessness in their churches. They advocated for a restoration to the pattern of Catholic worship, devotion, and spirituality, which originated in ancient times but was lost during the Reformation.
Why do we call ourselves “Anglo-Catholic?”
The word “catholic” comes from a Greek word meaning “universal” and originally referred to essential beliefs held by all Christians. As a result of various schisms and the consequences of the Protestant Reformation, it has come to identify Christians who hold a specific set of theological and sacramental views. Today, “Anglo-Catholic” describes the beliefs and practices of Episcopalians (Anglicans) who follow the ideas and practices born from the Oxford Movement.
What is the role of incense in the service?
The tradition of using incense in the liturgy dates back to ancient Hebrew worship, as recorded in the Psalms: “Let my prayer be set forth in Thy sight as the incense” (Psalm 141:2). Incense symbolizes the prayers of the faithful rising up to heaven. In the Revelation to St. John, smoke itself is associated with purification and sanctification. Therefore, we cense to set apart and to purify.
What can I expect at an Anglo-Catholic service at The Advent?
In addition to rediscovering ceremony, scholars of the Oxford Movement also led a return to classical Catholic theology. Most notably, they elevated the Sacrament of the Eucharist, in which we believe Christ to be really present to us in the sacramental bread and wine—His Body and Blood. From a Catholic viewpoint, this is an experience so profound that words become inadequate, and ceremonial gestures, such as the sign of the cross and genuflections, serve to express some of what we cannot put into speech.
Our liturgy incorporates a variety of ministers to enhance our worship, including the Celebrant, Deacon, and Subdeacon. Their roles and vestments date back to early Church tradition and not only define the roles of the servers, but also express the corporate nature of our worship by minimizing individual distinctions.
You may see congregants making gestures such as the sign of the cross or genuflecting. The gestures you witness are a matter of personal preference. The sign of the cross and other ceremonials are outward signs of reverence, expressions of deeply personal belief and practice. They are not requirements of our liturgy or indications one is ready for membership. We hope you feel comfortable experiencing our liturgy in a way that is meaningful to you. If you have questions, one of the clergy would be glad to explain these customs to you.
Can I receive Communion here?
All baptized Christians are welcome at our Altar. The Episcopal Church is clear that any person who has been baptized with water in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit may receive Communion in this Church. Please feel free to speak to one of the clergy if you have further questions about communion at The Advent.