Advent Episcopal Church has a wide range of varied, visible and invisible ministries which keep the church running. Some are administrative in nature, which often go unseen and unsung - such as Finance - to the more visible - such as Functions.
Here you'll find details of all our ministries and their respective lay leaders.
Office Volunteers - Kimberlee Stevens
The office is open for Advent’s daily business from 8:30 AM until 1:30 PM Monday through Thursday and Friday from 8:30 AM until 12:30 PM. Volunteers assist during those hours.
Sunday Bulletin – Kimberlee Stevens
The Sunday bulletin’s purpose is to make the focus on Sunday worship, just that: worship of God, not finding one’s way through the prayer book, hymnal and special announcements. The service is printed in the bulletin to make participating easy for all. Announcements are on a separate page to be taken home. Volunteers assist in making the bulletins ready for worship.
Luminary – Kimberlee Stevens
Our monthly parish newsletter, which makes news and information available to members and prospective members of Advent, is emailed to parishioners, posted on the website, and copies are available in the office and Narthex for those who do not use email or the internet.
Advent History and Preservation – Sharon Gullickson
The History Book chronicles the past practices, experiences and people that have built the strength of the Advent church family with God.
Hospitality, Events, and Publicity – Sharon Paine
This ministry’s mission is to communicate Advent’s presence and purpose in the Northwest Valley, as a place of family worship and spiritual fulfillment. In addition to communication this group works throughout the year to promote events held at Advent, such as the annual Arts & Craft show, as well as various concerts.
Advertising/Media – Dotty Eubank
The Northwest Valley is kept apprised of what is going on at Advent through the community newspapers and information centers, the Chamber of Commerce, local websites and through activities in the communities served. Paid advertising and unpaid activity announcements are included in the several community’s newspapers and websites. This team functions under Hospitality, Events, and Publicity ministry.
Advent Website & IT Team – Nita Martin
Our website www.adventaz.org is maintained by the team of: Nita Martin, Kimberlee Stevens, and Dianne Diaz. This IT Team allows Advent to communicate electronically and to operate with maximum efficiency. They help all functions within the church utilize the best available technologies within our budgets to get their jobs done.
ADVENTures in Biblical Storytelling (ABS)Canon Timothy Dombek & Pat Kindle
Following in the ancient tradition of the oral telling of the scriptures, ADVENTures in Biblical storytelling seeks to learn Gospel lessons and other biblical texts for use in the liturgies of the church, or other performance settings. See http://nbsint.org/aboutus and http://nbsint.org/watchastory
EfM – Russ Brumagin
Education for Ministry (EfM) is a four-year tuition based course of study developed and administered by the School of Theology of the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee. The four years cover the Hebrew Scriptures, the Christian Testament, Church History, and Theology, as well as practices such as Theological reflection. More information is available at http://www.sewanee.edu/EFM/.
Kerygma – Russ Brumagin
Kerygma is an in-depth study of the Bible. The day and time are posted in the Sunday Bulletin and on the website www.adventaz.org
Lectionary Bible Study – Canon Timothy, et al
The Lectionary Bible Study meets between services. This is a study of next week’s Sunday lessons and discussion starts each Sunday at 9:00 a.m.
Spirituality for the Second Half of Life – Canon Timothy
This group sponsors events and/or classes, such as book studies, retreats, video series, etc., dedicated to the development of spiritual growth for persons in their “second half of life,” as described by Fr. Richard Rohr in his book, Falling Upward, A Spirituality for the Two Halves of Life.
With Mind and Spirit: Living a Baptized, Spirit-filled Life – Raph Martin, Judy Huffman, and Phyllis Kuykendall
A weekly process of Christian formation and education in preparation for baptism, confirmation, reception, or reaffirmation. This process is a time for training in Christian understandings about God, human relationships, and the meaning of life. Candidates participate in regular worship and Christian service, and receive instruction in Christian faith and doctrine, including the scriptures. Entry into the process begins with a public liturgical act at the principal Sunday liturgy. Each person is presented by a sponsor who normally accompanies them throughout the process. The sessions are led by a catechist, and continue through the period of candidacy until baptism, confirmation, reception, or reaffirmation.
Safeguarding God’s Children and Safeguarding God’s People
The Episcopal Church takes the safety of everyone very seriously and has a zero tolerance policy for sexual abuse or exploitation of any kind. Therefore, as a member of ministry you are required to complete an online training course by the Episcopal Diocese of Arizona. There are two courses; one is Safeguarding God’s Children and the other is Safeguarding God’s People. See the Office Administrator for details on taking the on-line training should you need to do so.
Safeguarding God’s Children is a course on child abuse awareness and prevention education. There are six modules in this course one of which is a refresher that is taken five years after the initial five courses. Any ministry that has a child as a participant is required to take this course.
Safeguarding God’s People is a course on preventing sexual exploitation in communities of faith. Those ministries that are actively involved in the development of a pastoral care relationship are required to take this course.
Building & Grounds - Earl Yingling, Jr. Warden
Maintenance of everything that has to do with the church, its surrounding grounds, and Paine Hall.
Kitchen – Cathy Shyers
The kitchen is the heartbeat of most homes around which many of the activities circulate. So also at Advent. Managing it to serve in the healthiest way keeps everyone happy and healthy.
Advent Memorial Garden & Chapel – Chuck Smith
Throughout history, it has been the practice of the Church to baptize us when we are born and to bury us when we die. Many choose to be buried by their church, an age old custom. The practice of cremation is an appropriate and church approved way to treat human remains once the spirit has departed into the freedom of God.
With these thoughts in mind, Advent Episcopal Church has created “the Advent Memorial Garden & Chapel”. The walled garden adjacent to the church offers internment of ashes for those who wish in-ground burial, a Columbarium for ashes interred in wall Niches and a Wall of Remembrance for those who are interred elsewhere but want to be remembered at Advent Episcopal Church.
This restful island in a sea of activity must be managed soulfully and maintained immaculately.
Advent Meditation Garden – Chuck Smith
Our Mission is to offer our parishioners and the community an opportunity to share our space, to walk a path with a single route designed for meditation, reflection and prayer for inner peace and introspection. Commonly known as a “labyrinth”, the area includes benches for rest along the path and live plants mixed with cactus, a water feature and pagoda for shade.
The Financial Management Ministry assures prudent and reasonable oversight and management of Parish financial assets to assure their best use for operations and strategic planning.
Treasurer – Vacant
This position assures Parish financial transactions are in accordance with budget and Vestry policies, and recommends use of Parish funds to the Vestry as needed. Confidentiality of pledges and contribution information is assured as part of this job.
Generosity, Gratitude, and Stewardship – Jim Wooldridge
A year-round program of education within the parish prepares for an annual response of intention for giving (unrestricted operating dollars.) The committee plans and provides leadership for the annual response, encouraging all to recognize the gifts they have been given and continue to receive from God and in turn, give back a portion of the gifts in the form of time, talent and financial resources.
Investment Committee – Bob Stewart
The committee works with the Treasurer in the oversight of all funds invested by the Parish. These funds include: Endowment Fund (ECF), Bequest Fund (Vanguard), Stock Transfer Account (Charles Schwab), Endowment Dividends account (BMO Bank), Advent Memorial Garden Chapel Reserve account (BMO Bank).
Finance Committee – Dianne Diaz
Its purpose is to be knowledgeable concerning the financial matters of the Parish on behalf of the Vestry; recommending actions to the Vestry that will assure good stewardship of the income and expenses of the annual operations and special needs.
Counting Committee – Dianne Diaz
Its purpose is to count the amount of plate giving and other offerings, and to credit each donor’s account promptly and accurately.
Retailers’ Rewards Program – Nita Martin
Its purpose is to register with local retail establishments to provide income to Advent from their customer incentive programs.
Major Gifts – Pat Finnell
This ministry has responsibility for an education/cultivation plan for estate and special giving. (Usually this is Endowments, Bequest, restricted for specific purposes.) It develops Major Maintenance, Facilities Reserve, & Special Gifts Funds.
This Ministry’s mission is to communicate Advent’s presence and purpose in the Northwest Valley, as a place of family worship and spiritual fulfillment. In addition to communication this group works throughout the year to provide the annual Arts & Craft show, as well as various concerts.
Web Site & IT Team – Nita Martin
The Web Site is maintained by the team of: Nita Martin, Jody Lawrence, and Dianne Diaz. This IT Team allows Advent to communicate and to operate with maximum efficiency. They help all functions within the church utilize the best available technologies with our budgets to get their jobs done.
Advertising/Media – Dotty Eubank
The Northwest Valley is kept apprised of what is going on at Advent through the community newspapers and information centers, the Chamber of Commerce, local websites and through activities in the communities served. Paid advertising and unpaid activity announcements are included in the several community’s newspapers and websites.
Luminary – Kimberlee Stevens
Our monthly parish newsletter, which makes news and information available to members and prospective members of Advent, is emailed to parishioners, posted on the website, and copies are available in the office and Narthex for those who do not use the internet.
Advent Men’s Club – Tom Wolfe
The Men’s Club provides fellowship among the men of the church as well as significant outreach outside our community. The Men’s Club also provides labor to support both the physical facility and several other groups, such as the ECW Rummage Sale. It has a series of activities listed below:
18-Hole Golf – Chair varies by month
Advent’s men gather on one Saturday morning a month to enjoy the game – or at least the camaraderie. All skills are welcome.
9-Hole Swingers – Earl Thomas & Jack Stiehl
Advent’s couples play golf one Sunday afternoon a month and then gather at someone’s hour afterwards for “heavy snacks” and camaraderie.
Aluminum Can Sales –
We recycle aluminum cans in order that deserving kids can attend the summer Chapel Rock Community Camp. The dollars we collect from the recycling program go directly to a scholarship assistance program. There is a Diocesan policy that no child be denied a camp experience from financial need. For additional information please check out the website www.chapelrock.net.
Food Bank – Dick Sulley
This group conducts a gathering of non-perishable foods for the first Sunday of each month and delivers what is donated by parishioners to the St. Mary’s Food Bank.
Habitat for Humanity – Lloyd Findlay
Supports Habitat in several ways and this group manages and participates in that support. Several times a year they organize Advent’s members to go to a construction site to work on one of the houses being built there for underprivileged families.
Men’s Club Outreach – Bill Vaughan
The Men’s Club Outreach Committee donates funds to deserving organizations in the Northwest Valley. We strive to recognize the spiritual presence of Christ in our lives and to live out our beliefs through our actions. Our purpose is to help each other experience the Love of God, openly share the Gospel and respond in Love to the needs of our neighbors.
Advent Outreach – Sharon Navratil and Deacon Debbie Greenleaf
This ministry’s mission is to utilize our time, talent and treasure through outreach to the parishioners and community.
Periodicals – Sharon Gullickson
This is a ministry tied to the Forward Movement which publishes for the Episcopal Church. Samples of their pamphlets are kept available for the congregation in the tract rack in Paine Hall. The most popular publication is “Forward Day By Day” which is published every three months and is to be read daily.
United Thank Offering – Joyce Rozon
The United Thank Offering Ministry stretches throughout the world to expand the mission and ministry of the Episcopal Church. It is the sum of our thanks for the everyday blessings that God has bestowed upon us. We are encouraged to drop a few coins into our UTO boxes that we take home whenever we feel grateful for these blessings. The ingathering (collection) occurs every spring and fall.
Food and Fellowship – Sharon Paine, et al
Following the 10:00 am Sunday service, this group provides a light lunch in Paine Hall allowing everyone to grab a bite to eat and visit with fellow parishioners.
Newcomers – Pat Carroll
The purpose of the Newcomer’s Committee is to help visitors feel welcome and invite them to become a part of Advent’s church family. This committee’s responsibilities include manning the Guest Book before services, hosting the Newcomer’s table during coffee hour, ordering name tags, sending out Member Profiles for completion, delivering gift bags to newcomers, etc.
Parish Visitors –
The mission is to care for our parishioners. They visit hospitalized members and those in care centers and try to follow up on them. Phone calls are made to those who rarely attend church but wish to stay in touch. Licensed Pastoral Care Associates, Sharon Mather and Cecily Lansford, assist in this ministry.
Telecare – Malinda Case
The Telecare Ministry is a layperson Phone Ministry that provides support to members of our church family, telling someone we care, and asking members for any prayer requests. Calls are made on behalf of the pastoral staff, which enables the Rector to become aware of any changes in a parishioner’s well-being. The call is ended with a reminder that God loves you and we at Advent Episcopal Church love you too.
Bereavement – Gaye Wooldridge
A trained bereavement person takes the family of the deceased through funeral arrangements regarding burial, special scripture, music and flowers. Their wishes for a reception are passed on to the Reception Committee who prepare Paine Hall for a reception.
Walking the Mourner’s Path – Nan Wheeler
This Bereavement Ministry is designed to give persons the space and the tools to heal from grief over the loss of a loved one. The program consists of two-eight-week sessions and each session is limited to ten participants.
Parish Nursing and Health – Pat Carroll
Physical health of parishioners and health support preparedness are the primary focus. We take care of parishioners during services and activities, and if appropriate, call in necessary help and try to assure that necessary equipment and supplies are available.
Funeral Receptions – Nan Wheeler
We provide a reception after funerals/memorial services, if the family of the deceased wishes one. The committee bakes cookies and serves coffee and iced tea. A more elaborate reception with sandwiches is financed by the family. Anyone is invited to participate by either baking or helping set up the day before or the day of the reception.
Episcopal Church Women (ECW)
The ECW builds the women’s church family at Advent by providing opportunities to serve the church, the members and the community.
Daughters of the King – Nita Martin
A lay order of Episcopal women who have taken a lifetime vow to follow Christ by daily prayer, service and evangelism. Each Daughter decides how she will meet her vows. We lead the Stations of the Cross during Lent as one of our services and assist the Priest as needed.
Happy Hat Hookers – Judy Purdy
This group “hooks” hats for homeless children and adults and anyone who may need them. The group meets the 4th and 5th (if there is one) Mondays of the month from 8:30 to 11:30 AM.
“Helping Hands” – Judy Purdy, interim
The purpose of this Ministry is to make and deliver blankets and pillows for abused, homeless or otherwise needy children and others as well as to provide fellowship for the women and service to the community. The group meets the first three Mondays of the month from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. People come when they can and leave when they need to. We enjoy the camaraderie, a snack and knowing that we are doing good for those in need.
Miles of Pennies – Grace Roumell
The ECW actively participates in collecting donations for the Miles of Pennies (MOP) fund, which is one of two national granting funds of the Church Periodical Club. MOP monies are used to provide children, pre-school through grade 12, with printed or taped books and related materials.
ECW Outreach – Sharon Mather
ECW monetarily supports many outreach projects within the church and in the community and Diocese. In addition, each year they select one “hands on” outreach project. In 2013, a collection prior to Christmas provided a shopping experience for two needy families in Surprise. In 2014, our project was “Our Neighbor’s Keeper”. It is designed to provide a nutritious meal, contained in a quart-sized plastic bag, for anyone homeless or in distress. Parishioners as well as different agencies aid in the distribution.
Prayer Shawls – Karen Andrews & Babs Vaughan
This is a group of people who knit or crochet prayer shawls, mainly for parishioners. The shawls are given to those who need comfort, are ill, or grieving. As the shawls are made, the knitter and/or crocheter pray for help for these people.
Rummage Sale – Ann Fletcher
“Advent’s Attic” and Fashion Show is the annual fund raiser selling used “treasures” from members’ homes. We collect items throughout the year and ask parishioners for their help in storing them. For the Rummage Sale, we work from Monday through Thursday, getting everything set up and priced for sale. It is good fellowship and the proceeds go to our outreach programs. Our sale lasts two days but raises a great deal to support good causes.
Choir – Eldon Wold, Jr., Music Director
The purpose of the choir is to provide congregational leadership in the musical worship of the parish. The choir has fun and enjoys the camaraderie of its members. Rehearsals are each Sunday at 8:30 a.m. We welcome anyone who has the gift and the willingness to sing. We come together to make a “joyful noise unto the Lord.”
Altar Guild – Dianne Diaz
The Altar Guild keeps the vessels used for Holy Communion, altar linens, and candles in immaculate condition, and sets the altar for all services.
Ushers – John Long
The Ushers serve at all services, greeting parishioners and visitors, passing out bulletins, seating people as necessary, opening and locking the church, receiving the offering of people’s gifts, ringing the bell before service, and counting the attendees.
Greeters/Oblation Bearers – John Long
The Greeters welcome parishioners and visitors before the service and assist the Ushers with the offertory.
Lay Eucharistic Ministers – Nita Martin
Lay Ministers are trained to serve at the Altar during services as vested Acolytes, Crucifers, Readers, and Eucharistic Ministers.
Vergers – Nita Martin
The Vergers make the Sunday service work as the “detail” people. They oversee, prepare and coordinate all parts of the service so that the clergy can conduct the worship service without concern for the details.
Youth Acolytes – Nita Martin & Rex Mather
The new Youth Acolytes are trained to serve at the Altar during services as vested Acolytes and Crucifers. The Youth Acolytes are under the direct supervision of the Verger/Acolyte Master.
Readers of “Prayers of the People” – Nita Martin
These volunteers read the “Prayers of the People” weekly at both services.
Lectors (or Lay Readers) is a ministry inviting congregants to participate in the service by coming forward to read the Lessons. The role of the Lector is to make the WORD come alive to the listener. We want to provide a quality of reading that should make the listener want to look up and listen as opposed to reading the script.