Notes of the Advocate

May 11, 2024

Update from the Vestry

The Vestry continue to meet together and to pray - to determine the best way to call our next Rector. We will be meeting this week with the Bishop, where we can ask lingering questions and gain more clarity. 

We will be sending out survey(s) and facilitating listening sessions with the whole congregation in the coming weeks, because what YOU want and think and feel is vitally important as we move forward. 

In the meantime, please do talk with any of the vestry about any concerns or suggestions you may have. That's what we're here for. And we'll be having our usual summer cookout one Sunday soon - keep your eyes on these Notes!

Vestry of the Church of the Advocate:

  • Liz Gilson, Senior Warden; (919)-619-0886
  • Ames Herbert, Junior Warden
  • Elizabeth Brewington
  • Paul Marvin
  • Celisa Steele
  • Terry Wall
  • Non-voting: Nancy Usher Williams, Treasurer

Weekly Recurring Events

Sunday Worship Schedule, May 12, 2024

8:30 am Traditional Service (Outdoors, masks optional)

9:30 am Christian Formation

10:30 am Holy Eucharist in the chapel and on Zoom (masks optional) with Baptism!

11:30 am Light Food and Conversation

(Full links below.)

Spring Christian Formation

All formation (adult, teens, children) will pause for the summer after May 19th and resume in the fall.

  • Godly Play for our youngest Advocates, starting around age 3, will be held in the Advocate House (room is down the hallway and the last door on the left). Led by Sarah Bentley Allred and Victoria Shields.
  • Weaving God’s Promises (lessons based on lectionary texts) for tweens and teens will be held by the Wellhouse.
  • Adult Christian Formation will be held in the front room of the Advocate House.

Compline marks the day in peace as reflected in this portion of our beautiful night prayer:

All loving God,
it is night.

The night is for stillness.

Let us be still in your presence.

Please join us in joy and love.

Each evening (join whatever evenings you can - no commitment required) at 8:30pm via zoom.

Note: If you have attended compline regularly or even sometimes, there is a new zoom link that we'll use, starting Sunday evening, May 12th.

You can check out the liturgy here.

Contemplative prayer meets each Wednesday at 6pm with a group in person in the chapel and on zoom. (Contact us to get the Zoom link!)

Fast-Approaching Events

Godly Play Core Training at The Advocate
This spring Sarah Bentley Allred will offer three Godly Play training modules at The Advocate on March 9, April 13, and May 11. Godly Play Core Training is the recommended training for those leading Godly Play sessions, program administrators, parents/caregivers and clergy. Over the course of three Saturdays, participants experience all aspects of the Godly Play method and begin to become fluent in the Godly Play core stories and fundamental practices. The training will follow an action/reflection model of learning with a mixture of trainer-led presentations and participant storytelling presentations. Modules can be taken individually or as a set. They can be completed in any order over any length of time. Register here or reach out to Sarah for more information (

Reader's Roundtable

Wednesday, May 13|7:30 pm

The Advocate House

The Heaven and Earth Grocery Store (2023) is the richly-textured story of a small, diverse community centered around the Jewish-owned Heaven and Earth Grocery store in Pottstown Pennsylvania in the 20s and 30s, and of the big events – love, death, murder, kidnapping – that mark the lives of the people connected to it.

The discussion should be robust! Please come even if you haven't read the book!

Men's Fellowship Gathering

The Advocate Men's Fellowship will hold its next meeting from 8-9:30 am on Friday, May 17, at the church house. The meeting will focus on fellowship -- a simple breakfast, a short discussion centered around some relevant topic, and, as the organization develops, opportunities for church and outreach activities. Please RSVP to Joe Smith at if you can attend the upcoming meeting. We hope to see you there!

Food Distribution at Rogers Road

Community Center

May 18 is the next food distribution day at Rogers Road! Volunteers are welcome 8:00 am to 12:00 pm to help distribute the food that they have been collecting.


Saturday, May 18th at 5pm

Pizza get together in The Fold (you know - that huge, gorgeous deck to the left of the pond). We will have had the oven heating up all day and there will be pizza for all. Bring dessert if you feel inclined. 

And at 6pm...

We’re planning another rousing evening of Advo-Talent of Music, Dance, Poetry Readings, Stand Up Comedy, Art Sharing, Ventriloquism, Juggling, whatever you want to share — we want you to join! Interested? 

Email Erin Dangler And afterwards...

Stay and hang out around the fire by the pond. 

Sunday, May 19th

One service at 10:30am - Pentecost service (wear red!) and leave-taking with Marion.

Celebration Lunch: BBQ will be provided and people are invited to bring a side dish to share, e.g. salads, beans, vegetarian dishes or desserts.

Advocacy and Ministry

The RotA

Want to get more involved in church but not sure how? There are many opportunities on our RotA to help out in small ways during the service. All positions welcome more folks!

If you have any questions about what these ministries entail, feel free to ask whoever is doing it on any Sunday!

Interested in volunteering for a ministry? Contact Kaitlin Smith at and she can help get you on the RotA!

Food items collected in the bell tower of the chapel are taken to IFC on the Thursday prior to 1st, 2nd, and 4th Saturdays of the month.  Food items are taken to the Rogers Road Community Center prior to 3rd Saturdays of the month.

The Inter Faith Council for Social Services publishes current needs for the Community

Market (food pantry) on their website.

Rogers Road suggests shelf-stable food staples such as peanut butter and jelly, spaghetti sauce and noodles, breakfast cereal, UHT milk etc.

The Episcopal Farmworker Ministry is collecting backpacks for Back to School! Our goal is at least 10 full backpacks from the Advocate. Meg Smith has put a box in the bell tower, and you can bring filled backpacks or empty backpacks or supplies! We ask that you bring your items by June 23rd!

Click Here for a list of the supplies needed!

Questions? You can reach Meg at (919) 619-0031 or

Click Here for More Events!

The Trees is a 50-acre wooded property with a beautiful mid-century modern home nestled amidst the rolling hills just outside Durham, NC. Given to St. Philip’s Episcopal Church as a gift, this sacred home and land are open for community gathering, individual contemplation and rest.

Upcoming FREE Events:

  • May 17: Prayers and Poetry
  • June 4: Quiet Day

All are welcome! The Beloved Community will meet Sunday evenings at 4:45 p.m. Worship with Eucharist will be followed by a simple meal of soup and bread. For more information, visit the link below. Please be in prayer for this community and all who seek healing.

Learn More Here!


(Change of dates: We are postponing the retreat to the weekend after Memorial Day, Friday, May 31 and Saturday, June 1.) 
You are cordially invited to join us Friday evening and Saturday, for an experience of prayer, contemplation, discussion, and community. We'll have a schedule of prayers and discussions at specific times, and all registered participants are invited to attend and participate as they choose.
The focus of the retreat will be an exploration of the wisdom of the Desert Mothers and Father. These third and fourth century Christians felt drawn to the wildernesses of Egypt, Palestine, and Syria to live authentically the Gospel life. Their wisdom sayings were recorded for posterity by their disciples and by pilgrims who sought them out for a "word of life". To facilitate our exploration we'll discuss Christine Valters Painter's Desert Fathers and Mothers: Early Christian Wisdom Sayings
To enable participation by all, we are limiting the group to 20, so sign up soon to secure your spot.  Click this link to launch the registration form. There's no charge for the retreat, but a small donation would be greatly appreciated. 
Click here to review the tentative retreat schedule.    
If you have any questions, please contact Paul Marvin (, 919.451.2843), who will be leading the retreat. 


Introduction to Dismantling Racism

The 2024 dates and registration links are now available for "Introduction to Dismantling Racism: Reclaiming Our Baptismal Promise." Dismantling Racism is an interactive workshop offered via Zoom. It is designed to deepen spiritual commitment to dismantling racism as participants in the Jesus Movement. Through presentations, prayer, story sharing, videos and small group discussion, participants explore how the sin of racism impacts all lives.

2024 training dates:

  • January 26, 5-8 p.m., and January 27, 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Register.
  • March 22, 5-8 p.m., and March 23, 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Register.
  • June 21, 5-8 p.m., and June 22, 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Register.
  • July 26, 5-8 p.m., and July 27, 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Register.
  • September 27, 5-8 p.m., and September 28, 9 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Register.

Social Events

The Readers' Roundtable will meet on the third Wednesday of January, April, May, and June for our book discussions according to the following schedule.

   May 15      The Heaven and Earth Grocery Store, by James McBride

              Discussion leader, Julee Herbert

   June 19      The Night Watchman, by Louise Erdrich

              Discussion leader, Sallie Moore


Continuing on Sunday, June 2, a team of lay ministers will offer healing prayer once a month, during the communion time at the 10:30 service. Here at the Advocate we have a strong tradition of praying with and for each other and the world, and healing prayer has been part of the ministry of the Advocate in the past. Healing prayer is an extension of the Prayers of the People, and another way that we can offer our prayer and presence.

Prayer will be offered by a team of two lay ministers. If you would like the healing prayer team to pray with you, simply make your way to the Narthex (the bell tower) after receiving communion. And if you would like to be a part of the healing prayer team, contact Kerry Bullock-Ozkan.

Prayer for our Transition

In this season, we pray for your church, the Advocate, trusting that you have already been preparing our next rector to serve our community. Lead us by your Spirit so that we might be prepared to receive that person with love and joy. May we have eyes to see, ears to hear, and hearts open to your wisdom and guidance. Replace any of our fears with confidence in the future you have prepared for us. Let this season shape us as your people for the sake of the world you love. And may you surround Marion with love, as we prepare to send her into the next chapter of her life. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen

Contemplative Prayer Retreat Schedule

Virtual Retreat

May 31 - June 1, 2024 (Note the new dates!)

Book: Desert Fathers and Mothers: Early Christian Wisdom Sayings, by Christine Valters Painter

Registration will open mid April.

Cost: No charge.

In-person Quiet Retreat at Trinity Center, Pine Knoll Shores, NC

August 2-4, 2024

Book: The Great Unknown: Last Poems, by Denise Levertov

This retreat is for anyone who needs some quiet time at the end of the summer. You are invited to gather with us throughout the weekend for prayer (the Celtic Office and contemplative prayer) and for discussing the book, but all that's optional. You're welcome to make the time what you need it to be.


The registration fee is non-refundable. The remainder of the retreat cost will be due at the time of the retreat.

Cost: The cost for this retreat is $290 per person for a single room and $250 per person for a double. Please indicate whether you want a single or a double room on the registration form. We have 10 rooms total.


Seventh Sunday of Easter

O God, the King of glory, you have exalted your only Son Jesus Christ with great triumph to your kingdom in heaven: Do not leave us comfortless, but send us your Holy Spirit to strengthen us, and exalt us to that place where our Savior Christ has gone before; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, in glory everlasting. Amen.

Worship at The Advocate

Sunday Worship Schedule, May 12, 2024

8:30 am Traditional Service (Outdoors, masks optional)

9:30 am Christian Formation

10:30 am Holy Eucharist in the chapel and on Zoom (masks optional) with Baptism!

11:30 am Light Food and Conversation

A Note on the Liturgy

LINKS for worship

These links are always available at

10:30 Hybrid Worship

Meeting ID: 438 568 2876

Passcode: Whitby

May 12 Liturgy Guide
May 12 Music & Psalm Guide


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