PeeWee Homes in the News

The Advocate’s PeeWee Homes are featured in an Associated Press story about churches using tiny homes to tackle homelessness. The national story was released Saturday and features our very own Nathaniel “Pee Wee” Lee and former vicar Lisa Fischbeck.

“I thank the Lord because this is mine and nobody can run me out,” Pee Wee says in the article.

The story focuses on national trends among churches of many denominations building tiny homes to help those without housing. Homelessness nationwide has risen every year for the past 4 years.

Check out the full story here!

“Church leaders are not just trying to be more neighborly,” writes reporter Holly Meyer. “The drive to provide shelter is rooted in their beliefs — they must care for the vulnerable, especially those without homes.”

PeeWee Homes began in 2015, when the Advocate was approached by a small group interested in building tiny homes on church property for people with less than 30% of average median income. After much conversation, planning, fundraising and effort, the first residents moved into the Advocate’s three tiny homes in June 2019.

The hope is that PeeWee Homes at the Advocate will be a prototype, a model inspiring other churches and landowners to build PeeWee Homes on their properties as well.

Find out more about the Advocate’s PeeWee Homes and the PeeWee Homes Collaborative.

 

Hybrid church and in-person worship

Come join us in worship — in person or on Zoom!

Each Sunday there are a variety of liturgies. As always, please be safe and check out the Covid safety procedures, below. 

Click here for hybrid link and liturgy guide

**SUMMER UPDATE: Starting July 10, the 8:30 service will meet outside and the 12:30 service will go on summer hiatus.

Current church schedule:

  • 8:30 AM: Outdoor traditional service (no tech) — Holy Eucharist, the Book of Common Prayer and traditional hymns. Come in person and bring a chair
  • 10:30 AM: Indoor hybrid service — Holy Eucharist, Advocate binders, and music led by piano, voice and guitar. Come in person or on Zoom

Enjoy some fellowship! After the 10:30 service, come enjoy some outdoor fellowship time — bring a salad topping (greens provided) and enjoy hanging out with fellow Advocates around the pond.

Godly Play will resume on Sept 11, 2022 

COVID Safety procedures:

  • When inside the chapel, please wear a well-fitting mask (if you do not have this type of mask, grab one from the church vestibule)
  • Readers and preachers may remove their masks
  • The priest will wear a mask when presiding at the table
  • You may remove your mask to take the bread and wine during the Eucharist 
  • If you do not feel comfortable removing your mask indoors, the priest can provide bread and wine for you outside after the service
  • Air purifiers will be used inside the chapel during services
  • When outside, masks are optional

Address any questions or concerns to Marion@TheAdvocateChurch.org

Receiving the Cup of Salvation As We Transition from Covidtide

In September 2020, Advocates gathered safely at the Advocate pond to craft small clay cups from a single 25 pound block of clay. We used this cups for our Liturgy of Longing that Advent. One Maundy Thursday, 2021, we used our Advocate cups again, this time for our Maundy Thursday Agape Meal on Zoom.

Now, as COVID restrictions begin to loosen habit for those who are vaccinated and outdoors, we will use our Advocate cups (with the Bishop’s permission) as a way for us to receive the wine of the Eucharist, “the cup of salvation.”

Here’s the plan:

  1. The congregation gathers outdoors in a large circle or double arc.
  2. Each person/household has their own cup, placed reverently on a small clean cloth provided by the Advocate, on the ground and readily accessible.
  3. Rounds of bread, (and a gluten-free alternative), a flagon of wine, and a single chalice or cup are on the altar.
  4. A flagon of water is on the nearby credence table.
  5. The Presider, masked when required and having washed/sanitized hands according to Diocesan protocol, pours some wine from the flagon into the chalice/cup on the altar and pours a bit of water into both the chalice and the flagon.
  6. The Presider consecrates the bread and wine and breaks the bread.
  7. The Presider, masked when required, walks the arc, dropping a piece of the bread in each person’s hands. If there is contact, the presider re-sanitizes.
  8. After distributing the bread, the Presider invites those who would like to receive wine to pick up their cups and reverently hold them in the cup of their hands.
  9. The Presider, or another priest or deacon, masked as required, walks the arc, pouring a small amount of wine from the flagon into each cup, saying, “The blood of Christ. the Cup of Salvation (or, … keep you in everlasting life)”
  10. After serving others, the presider drinks from the chalice or cup on the altar.
  1. After all who wish to receive have received, The Presider/Deacon/Server walks the arc with the flagon of water, pouring water into each cup.
  2. The people perform the ablutions, circling the water in the cup and either consuming the water or pouring it reverently on the ground.
  3. Each household is responsible for taking their cup home and bringing it back with them when they return for worship.
  4. The clergy will maintain a supply of extra cups for visitors and/or households that forget to bring their cup from home.

 

Advocates Helping Our Neighbors in Need

As we seek to find our way in these strange times, that way is off balanced if we don’t also respond to our neighbors in need. Many of you are already finding ways to do this. Here are some ways you can help via The Advocate.
Because we aren’t taking up our weekly food offerings on Sundays, we will be contributing to the food pantry at the Interfaith Council via bell tower drop-offs.


The Advocate Garden yielded 2 1/2 gallon bags  of sugar snap peas , one bag of chard, and 6 or so bags of lettuce, delivered to the IFC

As you are out shopping pick up any of the following to donate. You can leave food donations in the Advocate Chapel bell tower.

  1. Canned meat (spam, tuna, salmon, vienna sausages)
  2. Pork and beans
  3. Baked beans
  4. Pinto beans
  5. Chili
  6. Ramen
  7. Pasta
  8. Peanut butter
  9. Jelly
  10. Snacks
  11. Cereal
  12. Spaghetti
  13. Toilet paper
  14. Shampoo
  15. Liquid soap
  16. Coffee/tea/hot chocolate
  17. Juice
  18. Fresh or frozen chicken or turkey for take-out meals
  19. Olive oil and butter for take-out meal preparation

In the weeks ahead, we will once again collect food to assist the good people of the Rogers/Eubanks Neighborhood Association in collecting food for those in need in the neighborhood. They will supplement food donations with food purchased at discount in order to provide three meals to 250 different households. 

Join the Advocate for Contemplative Prayer — online and in person

Join members of the Advocate online or in person on Wednesdays for contemplative prayer at 6 PM and 7 PM.

6 pm Contemplative Prayer In person in the Advocate Chapel and on Zoom
7 PM Contemplative Prayer In person in the Advocate Chapel
In the Chapel we will follow safety protocols, requiring a mask and safe distancing. We also need to know numbers ahead of time, so please write: advocate.contemplative.prayer@gmail.com if you plan to be there, and/or to request to be added to the weekly email with the meeting link information.

Learn more about Contemplative Prayer here!

ChurchLands

In 2018, the Episcopal Church’s General Convention passed Resolution D053: Stewardship of Creation with Church-Owned Lands, which affirmed that church-owned land holds the potential for ecological benefit, community healing, and ministries of discipleship and evangelism. The newly formed ChurchLands initiative seeks to inspire and equip church leaders who are tasked with the care of church-owned land. 

With our 15 acres of land, and a commitment to be good stewards of that land, The Advocate seems like a good prospective participant in the program!

The vision of ChurchLands is to inspire and assist churches in stewarding land in a way that is faithful to the Gospel: integrating discipleship, ecology, justice, and health. In its pilot stage, ChurchLands will develop a small group of Christian leaders learning and working together on land use issues in their local contexts.

This cohort has been selected, but we can still be involved!

In the seasons ahead, ChurchLands will offer regular in-person gatherings to explore Scripture, practical theology, and land use issues for Christians who care for land. An online ChurchLands Network will serve as a national platform to inspire and engage this work through network building and resource-sharing. The ChurchLands initiative will be managed through Plainsong Farm & Ministry in Rockford, Michigan, a ministry in the Episcopal Diocese of Western Michigan. 

Folks can participate by connecting with current cohort members, participating in webinars, or as prayer partners. For more information, contact Emma Lietz Bilecky emmalietz@gmail.com.

Advocate long sleeve t-shirts available

Our Bishop, Sam Rodman, and our Vicar, Lisa Fischbeck, enjoy the shirt in red and in grey.

Advocate 15th Anniversary  t-shirts in grey or red are available in kids small and medium, and in adults small, medium and large.

On the front, the shirts read:
ADVOCATE
BE THE NOUN
DO THE VERB

On the back, the shirts read:
Welcoming people of every kind of household and at every stage of life and faith and doubt since 2003 – The Advocate. (and there’s an image of the Advo-cat, Smoke)

A donation of $15 is requested for each shirt.
Cash or write checks to ECOTA, with T-shirt in the memo line.

Shirts are available at the Church House, especially on Sundays.

For an additional $7.50 plus you address, we will send one to you!

You can order in two ways:

  1. Online. Send your mailing information and your size to:
    The Advocate Church Office <theadvocatechurch@gmail.com>
    Then go to our online donation page and donate $22,50 (or more!). For convenience, use the general operating fund designation. We will assume that gifts of $22.50 are intended for t-shirt purchase and mailing. But will need an email let us know where to send it!
  2. Send a check and your size in the mail to:
    Advocate t-shirts
    8410 Merin Road
    Chapel Hill, NC  27516

 

 

Glory Bees! A Piedmont Patch Project

On Friday, April 6 a hive of 12,000 bees were installed in their new hive on the north side of the Advocate Pond.

We can learn about bees, bee keeping, and the Advocate Church bees in particular, by following the blog, Glory Bees, found here.

 

 

Blog posts include:
An Introduction
The Queen
Pollen and Plants
New Digs!

A post for National Pollinator Week posted August 4)
Sugar Shakin (posted August 6)
Time to Treat (posted August 8)

For more about the Piedmont Patch, look here.

 

 

The Piedmont Patch Project

img_7929The Piedmont Patch Project: Restoring Native Flora and Fauna, One Patch of Piedmont at a Time

The people of the Episcopal Church of the Advocate have a dream. Since moving onto our scruffy 15-acre site in 2014, we have been working to transform it into a place of hospitality, worship, and contemplation, and a regional resource for collaborative social ministry and the arts. In 2015, The Advocate began collaborating with individuals and organizations outside the church to host three “tiny homes” on our site, for individuals who would otherwise be homeless (PeeWeeHomes.org ). Now we are beginning a second collaboration, the Piedmont Patch Project, to restore native flora and fauna displaced by the rapid urbanization surrounding the property, and to cultivate keepers of Creation.

The Piedmont Patch project will transform five acres of our site into a food-producing and natural habitat, create a network of involved neighbors and provide numerous opportunities to educate and engage people of all ages and backgrounds. We believe that in deepening connections with creation and with our community, mindfully tending and keeping the land and teaching others to do the same, we will honor God.

20170628_195951We imagine the Advocate Pond and grounds enriched with diverse well-adapted native plants that will attract and nurture an array of wildlife, including butterflies, bees, birds, frogs, turtles, and small mammals. Surrounded by rapid urbanization, the Church of the Advocate’s acreage can serve as a sanctuary for homeless wildlife increasingly displaced by bulldozers, asphalt, and concrete. Over time, such native plantings require less maintenance than traditional ornamental plantings, most of which do not meet the needs of native wildlife.

The project has an educative component, engaging school children and graduate students and inviting all who are responsible for patches of Piedmont land to learn how to create vibrant native sanctuaries that serve rather than harm God’s creation. Ideally, we can lead other congregations and other neighborhoods to adopt this concept of native sanctuaries, building refuges of hope for native wildlife and havens of peace and beauty for humans one patch of piedmont (and beyond!) at a time. The Project will also include education on invasive exotic species and their removal — why it is important, how it contributes to sustainability.

IMG_8563The Piedmont Patch Project is grounded in a belief that the environment and our natural resources will be better sustained, and even thrive, as organizations and individuals work to cultivate one patch at a time. The Project is envisioned as a collaborative effort of the church, the town, the NC Botanical Gardens, and individuals with knowledge and skills to share, such as Cathy Bollinger of The Piedmont Gardener.

We hope the Piedmont Patch Project (like the Pee Wee Homes Collaborative) will serve as prototypes that can be scaled and replicated in a variety of church, public, and private settings.

Breaking News!!! The Advocate Awarded Stewardship of Creation Grant from The Episcopal Church!

Here’s and article about native and non-native wildflowers and bees.

A Teachable Moment

imagesA Teachable Moment is a thirty minute occasion to reflect on an issue or event in the life of the congregation, the wider community, or the world. It consists of about 10 minutes of presentation and about 20 minutes of conversation. While we have a cache of subjects to draw on, we also are ready to spontaneously respond to something current.

“A Teachable Moment … it’s worth your time. Our commitment is that the time spent in conversation with one another will be relevant, inspiring, and enriching, as we talk about the things that matter against a horizon of hope.”    Lisa and Nathan.