Staying Safe and Staying Connected
Good Morning Saint Stephen’s Church,
We continue our life of daily prayer. The Lord be with you!
O Father, thou art my eternity.George MacDonald
Not on the clasp of consciousness—on thee
My life depends; and I can well afford
All to forget, so thou remember, Lord.
In thee I rest; in sleep thou dost me fold;
In thee I labor; still in thee, grow old;
And dying, shall I not in thee, my Life, be bold?
George MacDonald was a nineteenth century Scottish author whose works included Christian apologetics, fairy tales and fantasy, and poetry. He was also a minister in the Congregational tradition, though he was not always well-received in this role. An article from the BBC describes MacDonald being accused of heresy in his first church position in Arundel, Scotland. He is described as an influence on many fantasy writers, including C.S. Lewis, J. R. R. Tolkien, and Madeleine L’Engle. Lewis himself wrote this about MacDonald: “I know hardly any other writer who seems to be closer, or more continually close, to the Spirit of Christ Himself. Hence his Christ-like union of tenderness and severity. Nowhere else outside the New Testament have I found terror and comfort so intertwined.”
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: 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: Mary Alice, John, Sabrina, Jim, Nick, Jane, Joe and Molly.
For those who are homebound: Stephen, Pauline, Joan, Janet and Marilyn.
Our Government Leaders: Donald Trump, President of the United States; Andrew Cuomo, Governor of New York State; Gary McCarthy, Mayor of Schenectady
Our Church Leaders: Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, Michael Curry, Presiding Bishop, William Love, and Daniel Herzog our bishops; James and Dennie our priests; Pat our deacon and Allison our Lay Reader
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, Joe, Matt and Lisa.
For Bob – today is his birthday!
For all the blessings of this life.
For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion: Nelson (Aotearoa NZ & Polynesia), Akure (Nigeria), Isial-Ngwa South (Nigeria).
For all who have died: especially George, Carl and Elizabeth.
For one another.
Something to share
The Burnt Offering
Is there a man on earth, who, every night,George MacDonald
When the day hath exhausted each strong limb,
Lays him upon his bed in chamber dim,
And his heart straightway trembling with delight,
Begins to burn up towards the vaulted height
Of the great peace that overshadows him?
Like flakes of fire his thoughts within him swim,
Till all his soul is radiant, blazing bright.
The great earth under him an altar is,
Upon whose top a sacrifice he lies,
Burning to God up through the nightly skies,
Whose love, warm-brooding o’er him, kindled his;
Until his flaming thoughts, consumed, expire,
Sleep’s ashes covering the yet glowing fire.
News & Updates
Community Discussion – Racially charged issues never go away; every now and then it makes the news. But it is time to learn how to be an ANTIRACIST. Schenectady Clergy Against Hate invites you to read Ibram X. Kendi’s book “How To Be An Antiracist” and then join us for a community discussion on Monday June 15 at 7 pm. Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 974 9629 2939
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: firstname.lastname@example.org)
If you did not receive a phone call in the last few weeks from a member of the Vestry and you would like to be added to the communication list, please let me know (email@example.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!
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.