Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayer – Thursday, April 2, 2020

Staying Safe and Staying Connected

Good Morning Saint Stephen’s Church,

We continue our life of daily prayer. The Lord be with you!

Today’s Prayer

O Jesus,
Thou brightness of eternal glory,
Thou comfort of the pilgrim soul,
with thee is my tongue without voice,
and my very silence speaketh unto thee . . .

Come, O Come!
For without thee I shall have no joyful day
nor hour;
for thou art my joy,
and without thee my table is empty . . .

Praise therefore and glory be unto thee,
O Wisdom of the Father;
let my mouth,
my soul, and all creatures together,
praise and bless thee.

Thomas À Kempis, 1471

Thomas À Kempis wrote Imitatio Christi (Imitation of Christ), a devotional book considered by many the most influential work in Christian literature, second only to the Bible. Remarkable for its simple language and style, it emphasizes the spiritual rather than the materialistic life, affirms the rewards of being Christ-centered, and supports Communion as a means to strengthen faith. Thomas stresses asceticism rather than mysticism, and moderate – not extreme – austerity.

From Our Prayers of the People

Today, let’s pray:

For all affected by the coronavirus around the world. For the leaders of the nations that they may work together for the common good as the outbreak spreads. May barriers that divide be brought down that bonds of trust may be strengthened to benefit the entire human family.

For our Government Leaders: Donald Trump, President of the United States; Andrew Cuomo, Governor of New York State; Gary McCarthy, Mayor of Schenectady

For those on the frontline:  police, firefighters, EMTs, postal workers, sanitation workers, grocery personnel, delivery and transport workers, and all who must report to work because what they do is essential for our well-being, health, and safety.

For those on the Parish Prayer Chain:  Pauline, John, Rick, Bob J., Arthur and Al.

For those who are homebound: Stephen, Pauline, Joan, Janet and Marilyn.

Those who are imprisoned: especially the women in the Schenectady County Jail.

For those in need of healing: Cindi, Peter, Mary Frances, Debbie, Budd and Joe.

For all the blessings of this life.

For Patricia J and Joan M –  today is their baptismal anniversary!                            

For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion: Meath & Kildare (Ireland), West Ankole (Uganda) and

West Buganda (Uganda)

For all who have died:  especially Sara, William, Emma, Dorothy, Glenn and Clark.

For one another.

Something to share

Jane T brought this to my attention years ago, during another crisis. It was written by Theodore P. Ferris, a former rector of Trinity Church in Boston. 

This is another day, O Lord. I know not what it will bring
forth, but make me ready, Lord, for whatever it may be. If I
am to stand up, help me to stand bravely. If I am to sit still,
help me to sit quietly. If I am to lie low, help me to do it
patiently. And if I am to do nothing, let me do it gallantly.
Make these words more than words, and give me the Spirit
of Jesus. Amen.

Book of Common Prayer, p. 461

News and Updates

Count Each Person in Census 2020!  Our divinely granted dignity demands equal recognition of our belief that , “We believe that all people, regardless of race, religion, or immigration status, are made in God’s image…” When we participate in the Census, we claim our God-given dignity and declare that we are here. The Census only happens once a decade and it is our opportunity to declare that we are here. Unfortunately, too many of us are not counted which results in less funding for our local schools and hospitals. $800 billion of federal funds are distributed based on who is counted in the Census, so there’s a lot at stake! Our political representation is determined by how many people in our community are counted in the Census. When our neighbors are not counted it weakens our collective voice to make change.

Reminders                                 

If you did not receive a phone call this last week from a member of the Vestry and you would like to be added to the communication list, please let me know (james.ross.mcd@gmail.com) and share with me the best telephone number(s) where we can reach you. We will add you to the list right away.

If you have an update/news, a prayer or poem or something inspirational you would like us to share with the congregation, please send it to us. Please also send us any prayer requests. We will incorporate these into the Morning Prayers as best we can.

Our church campus is closed. All parish meetings and gatherings are canceled and postponed until further notice.

Be careful what you read online. There are reports of false information circulating in an attempt to create fear and confusion. And, God forbid, always remember – any online or texted-based solicitation from me for money is A SCAM. Do not reply to such messages. Delete them.

Our goal is for all of us to stay in touch and connected in this time of isolation.

Share this news, and spread some love, not the virus!

Be of good courage. We are in this together, and we will be together again soon. God bless you and may God be with us in the days ahead.

Peace,

James+