Rhythms of Grace at Advent

Rhythms of Grace at the Church of the Advent in Coventry is a ministry of the diocese serving the autistic community with a specialized worship service.

Rhythms of Grace was born as the vision of the Rev. Dennis Bucco who, on his way to work each day, drove past a church that was closed about five years ago (St. Mathias). He wanted to try something different — something that didn’t meet on Sunday’s so he, and other clergy and laity who were involved in their own congregations, could participate. His original idea of serving first responders changed when everyone he spoke to seemed to have a connection with the autistic community. Soon the idea of serving this community came to the fore and he, the Rev. Deacon Mary Ann Mello and a cadre of volunteers set to work refurbishing the building and preparing to welcome this new community.

Rhythms of Grace started its learning phase in late spring of 2014 and gradually added families and individuals to the community as they build a worship service, Christian formation and fellowship time that meets the needs of this community. The vision of a congregation designed to serve the autistic community has captured the imagination of nonprofits, therapists, teachers and others around the state who are prepared to support this new community. Our hope is that some of them will also offer services to the autistic community at other times during the week.

RGAdventChurch of the Advent is an “incubator church” — a place open to other experiments with groups or worshipping community seeking to “try something” that might encounter resistance or compete with other groups in an existing congregation. We also hope that the Coventry community will find Advent a place where they can offer programs, host events, or find a home for the services they offer to others. The church is used weekdays by EnrichRI, an association of families that home-school their children (http://enrichri.org/)

For more information about Rhythms of Grace at Advent, contact the Rev. Dennis Bucco orDeacon Mary Ann Mello. For information about using the building for another worship service, program or agency, contact Geri Manning, Property Manager.