Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Friday, May 15, 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

Tie the strings to my life, my Lord,
Then I am ready to go!
Just a look at the horses –
Rapid! That will do!

Put me in on the firmest side,
So I shall never fall;
For we must ride to the Judgment,
And it’s partly down hill.

But never I mind the bridges
And never I mind the sea;
Held fast in everlasting race
By my own choice and thee.

Good-by to the life I used to live,
And the world I used to know;
And kiss the hills for me, just once;
Now I am ready to go!

Emily Dickinson, 1886

Today we remember one of America’s greatest poets Emily Dickinson.  A native of Amherst, Dickinson came from a prominent family of this area and attended Mount Holyoke, but for only one year. Her poetry was influenced by the Metaphysical poets of 17th century England, as well as her reading of the Book of Revelation and her upbringing in, what at the time was, a Puritan New England town, a place which encouraged a Calvinist, orthodox, and conservative approach to Christianity. Her spirituality was complex and nuanced. Dickinson had her beliefs, and she had her questions and doubts. From her poetry one discerns an interest in “faith and doubt, suffering and salvation, mortality and immortality.” On this day, May 15, 1886, at the age of 55, Emily Dickinson entered into paradise. To learn more, please visit the Emily Dickinson Museum website: https://www.emilydickinsonmuseum.org/

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, Jim, Nick, Jane,  Joe and Molly.

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 Charline Hoffmann – today is her birthday!

For all the blessings of this life.

For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion: Nagpur (North India), Aba (Nigeria).

For all who have died:  especially Harry, Gwendolyn, Grant, Donald, John H. and David.

For one another.

Something to share

Cindi L writes:

It’s another beautiful day outside; I can’t wait to get some warmth and sun. I am so excited that I can finally plant my perennials without the fear of low night temperatures.  I wanted to share this beautiful YouTube video that I frequently listen to while napping. Yesterday I was listening to it and watching it and found it so peaceful. I thought it would be nice to share with our church community. I think it’s good for the soul as it’s both visual and audio, taking you into nature and a natural state of calm. 

What is – “Paradise”

What is — “Paradise” —
Who live there —
Are they “Farmers” —
Do they “hoe” —
Do they know that this is “Amherst” —
And that I — am coming — too —

Do they wear “new shoes” — in “Eden” —
Is it always pleasant — there —
Won’t they scold us — when we’re homesick —
Or tell God — how cross we are —

You are sure there’s such a person
As “a Father” — in the sky —
So if I get lost — there — ever —
Or do what the Nurse calls “die” —
I shan’t walk the “Jasper” — barefoot —
Ransomed folks — won’t laugh at me —
Maybe — “Eden” a’n’t so lonesome
As New England used to be!

Emily Dickinson

News and Updates

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.

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+