Staying Safe and Staying Connected
Good Morning Saint Stephen’s Church,
We continue our life of daily prayer. The Lord be with you!
Grant, O God, that we may follow the example of your faithful servant Barnabas, who, seeking not his own renown but the wellbeing of your Church, gave generously of his life and substance for the relief of the poor and the spread of the Gospel; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.Book of Common Prayer, p.241
Today is the Feast of St. Barnabas
Although not one of the apostles recorded in the Gospels, Barnabas is often called an apostle because of his close association with the leaders of the early Church, starting with his extensive travels with St. Paul. His original name was Joseph, but the other apostles renamed him Barnabas, a name that means Son of Encouragement. What a wonderful name. Encourage means to give hope, and as a ministry, bringing hope to a hopeless world is doing the work of God.
Barnabas must have had a commanding presence. At Lystra, in Asia Minor, the people mistook Paul and Barnabas to be gods, supposing the gifted speaker Paul to be Mercury, the messenger of the gods, and Barnabas to be Jupiter, the chief of the gods.
Paul and Barnabas parted ways over a dispute about traveling with Mark, who may have been related to Barnabas. Having separated from Paul, Barnabas traveled with Mark to Cyprus. Tradition has it that Barnabas was martyred there at Salamis.
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: Debby, Sylvia, Irene, Barbara and Frank.
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 Jean – today is her baptismal anniversary!
For all the blessings of this life.
For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion: Newala (Tanzania), (North India),
Angola (Missionary Diocese) (Southern Africa)
For all who have died: especially Allison, Charles and Hiola.
For one another.
Something to share
Healing and BlessingFredrica Harris Thompsett, Ph.D
Come, now reviving Spirit of our God,
Breathe your healing strength upon those who suffer
And then, renew and bless all who
Proclaim and perform your liberating Word.
“Now when we had discovered Cyprus, we left it on the left hand.”Acts 21:3
“We sailed under Cyprus, because the winds were contrary.”Acts 27:4
St. Barnabas, with John his sister’s son,Christina Rossetti
Set sail for Cyprus; leaving in their wake
That chosen Vessel, who for Jesus’ sake
Proclaimed the Gentiles and the Jews at one.
Divided while united, each must run
His mighty course not hell should overtake;
And pressing toward the mark must own the ache
Of love, and sigh for heaven not yet begun.
For saints in life-long exile yearn to touch
Warm human hands, and commune face to face;
But these we know not ever met again:
Yet once St. Paul at distance overmuch
Just sighted Cyprus; and once more in vain
Neared it and passed;–not there his landing-place.
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.