Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Staying Safe and Staying Connected

Good Morning Saint Stephen’s Church,

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

Alleluia. Christ is risen.

The Lord is risen indeed. Alleluia.

Today’s Prayer

We cannot love God unless we love each other, and to love we must know each other. We know God in the breaking of the bread, and we know each other in the breaking of the bread, and we are not alone anymore. Heaven is a banquet and life is a banquet, too, even with a crust where there is companionship.

From the Postscript of The Long Loneliness, the Autobiography of Dorothy Day

Dorothy Day was a journalist, social activist, Christian anarchist, and Roman Catholic convert. She initially lived a bohemian lifestyle before gaining public attention as a social activist after her conversion. At the time of her death in 1980, she was described as “the most influential, interesting, and significant figure” in the history of American Catholicism – an extraordinary statement for one who never held an official position in the Church and whose ideas were almost universally rejected throughout most of her life.

The Catholic Worker, a lay movement she founded in 1933 and oversaw for nearly 50 years, was an effort to show that the radical gospel commandment of love could be lived. Day represented a new type of political holiness – a way of serving Christ not only through prayer and sacrifice but through solidarity with the poor and in struggle along the path of justice and peace. She was called a communist by many. She was shot at, jailed, and investigated repeatedly by the F.B.I.

In combining the practice of charity and the call to justice Dorothy Day represented a type of holiness not easily domesticated. She called on the Church to recover its identity as an offense and mystery in the eyes of the world. Her life was a living parable, focused on what she called the mystery of the poor: “that they are Jesus, and what you do for them you do to Him.”

From Our Prayers of the People

Today, let us pray:

For the just and proper use of your creation; for the victims of hunger, fear, injustice, and oppression.

For comfort and healing for all who are affected by the Coronavirus, and for physicians, nurses, and all others who minister to the sick and the suffering, may God grant them wisdom and skill, sympathy and patience, and may God keep them healthy and safe.

For all essential workers; for 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:  John, Sabrina, Joan, Charlie, Jim, Nichol and Kelly.

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

Those who are imprisoned: those particularly vulnerable at this time, especially the women in the Schenectady County Jail.

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

For Belachew E –  today is his birthday!

For all the blessings of this life.

For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion: Multan (Pakistan) , Yirol (South Sudan), Nyang (South Sudan), Aluakluak (South Sudan), Ikeduru (Nigeria)  

For all who have died:  especially Richard, Taylor, Alice, Shirley and Melanie.

 For one another.

Something to share

One should pay attention to even the smallest crawling creature, for these too may have a valuable lesson to teach us, and even the smallest ant may wish to communicate with a man.  

Black Elk

Many young people have come here and worked with us, and they tell us after a while that they have learned a lot and are grateful to us, but they disagree with us on various matters – our pacifism, our opposition to the death penalty, our interest in small communities, and our opposition to the coercive power of the state. You people are impractical, they tell us, nice idealists, but not headed anywhere big and important. They are right. We are impractical, as one of us put it, as impractical as Calvary. There is no point in trying to make us into something we are not. We are not another community fund group, anxious to help people with some bread and butter and a cup of coffee or tea. We feed the hungry, yes; we try to shelter the homeless and give them clothes, if we have some, but there is a strong faith at work; we pray. If an outsider who comes to visit doesn’t pay attention to our praying and what that means, then he’ll miss the whole point of things.

Dorothy Day, 1980

Reminders                                

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.

Prayerbook Parish Morning Prayer in Zoom – each morning.  Join Dennie and me for an inter-active service of Morning Prayer at 9 am. Time to bring your prayer concerns will be provided.  (contact me for the link: james.ross.mcd@gmail.com)

If you did not receive a phone call in the last few days 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.

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

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!

Irish Blessing

May the road rise up to meet you,
May the wind be at your back,
May the sun shine upon your face,
The rains fall soft upon soft upon your fields,
And until we meet again
May God hold you in the palm of his hand.

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+