|Date Posted||June 15, 2017|
East Carolina (Matthew Stockard & Hannah Hilterbrand)
|Health Benefits||Clergy Only|
|Communicants in Good Standing||120|
|Average Sunday Attendance||51|
|Child Population in Church School||8|
|Adult Population in Church School||10|
|Teacher Population in Church School||4|
The Church of the Advent takes relationship: with God, with One Another, with our Neighbors as a key values of our parish community. We partner with three other Churches in the area for a program called Blessings in a Backpack. During this project over a dozen church members packed food for almost one hundred students in our county. These food bags are used over the weekends when meals are not available at schools for socioeconomically deprived children. We worked with a local Baptist Church in this ministry and for once we were all talking a common language with Baptists, Methodists, Presbyterians and Disciples of Christ in Martin County.
Recently, a young adult visitor from another parish in the state expressed his enjoyment of worshiping the traditional way at the Church of the Advent. We do follow the Book of Common Prayer but are flexible when called upon. We observe Holy Week with all its many services as well as other principal services of the year. We principally sing from Episcopal Hymnals, and we have once a month Wednesday Evening Prayer (without music) followed by a soup and sandwich dinner. This offers a quiet and reflective alternative.
We are active in our connection to our other churches in the Diocese of East Carolina. We send delegates to diocesan convention each year. A Vestry member of our parish represents us at deanery meetings. One parishioner serves on the Executive Board of the Diocesan Episcopal Church Women. One member serves on the Foundation of East Carolina. Our United Thank Offering parish chair regularly carries out parish in-gatherings.We have bought mosquito nets and animals for Episcopal Relief and Development, while the parish children have bought fish. We also participated with the entire diocese to collect moneys for clean water. We contribute to Migrant Farmworkers ministry. We participate in Crop Walk, Relay for Life, donate can goods to Social Services and the Martin County Council on Aging, Blessings in a Backpack as well as school supplies to foster children in the county. We have hosted Executive Council, an Anti-Racism workshop and an Economic Justice workshop.
Williamston sits at the intersection of two major routes going east (1 1/2 hours from the coastal beaches of the Outer Banks) and north (1 1/2 hours from Norfolk, Va. It is thirty minutes to a regional airport in Greenville (PGV) with a connection to the Charlotte hub and Raleigh (1 1/2 hours). It is about an hour's drive to I-95. Williamston has a community theater, county arts council, public library with full time librarians, full time children's director at the library, a full time travel and tourist director, economic director and Martin General Hospital. It is located on the Roanoke River with public access boat ramps, a paddle trail including over 10 platforms used for camping. Tennis courts, 18 hole golf course, walking and bike trails are available and a regional festival, Stampede in the Park. Wildlife and state parks, including beaches, are within a relatively brief drive. The metros of Raleigh and Norfolk are each around an hour and a half away, as are significant NC beaches and wildlife areas of the Outer Banks.
Please learn a bit more about us by visiting our parish website:
Probably the most significant challenge to the ministry of the Church of the Advent is the declining population of Williamston — largely due to the lack of a significant industrial base as well as an aging population as many children seek larger cities after college. This is experienced in most of the mainstream churches in our area, all of which despair of the lack of children. Each year fewer children attend Vacation Bible School and a few churches do not offer such programs anymore.
We want to be active in dealing with change and planning for the future. We are updating our technology and our website. We communicate with emails and social media to contact parishioners. It is our hope to be able to be creative and collaborative in seeking ways for our priest to be able to engage wider community and even help provide some support to sister congregations. We work to welcome all who attend our church regardless of race or sexuality. Conflict sometimes has arisen in group or committee meetings. It is usually addressed by those who are involved and is worked out by those individuals at that time. We do try to be accepting of new ideas and try to nurture and embrace those new ideas. We try to be accepting of diversity and include that diversity in worship and fellowship.
We believe that the priest with whom we next partner will:
• Be a person of faith who builds community and hope
• Hold the ability to work well in small group and community settings
• Be accepting of life in a small community
• Be aware of and open to southern culture
• Have a great sense of self-depreciating humor
• Be an efficient money manager
One goal is to partner with a priest for the work of Episcopal Church communities in this rural region. While cash compensation is not high, please note that the Parish intends to provide (in addition to one month of regular vacation) an additional 40 days of vacation time which may include as many as 8 Sundays (not to be taken in a consecutive way, but in a manner helpful to both priest and parish) - it is the parish's hope that such time might present not only time for rest, but time for other projects the priest may be interested in which will engage the mission of The Episcopal Church in the region or beyond, including possible work with other parishes.
Priests who would like to express their interest in participating in the discernment of this part-time Priest-in-Charge work at Church of the Advent, Williamston should complete the entire brief survey to be found at this link (will take about 15 minutes):
Do not send additional materials at this time. Persons who complete the survey at this link will be contacted and informed of next steps by Canon Matthew Stockard.
This position will continue to receive names until 11:45 pm EDT on July 30, 2017.