Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Monday, June 22, 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

Give us grace, O God, to dare to do the deed which we well know
cries to be done. Let us not hesitate because of ease, or the
words of men’s mouths, or our own lives. Mighty causes are
calling us—the freeing of women, the training of children, the
putting down of hate and murder and poverty—all these and
more. But they call with voices that mean work and sacrifices
and death. Mercifully grant us, O God, the spirit of Esther, that
we say: I will go unto the King and if I perish, I perish.

W.E.B. Du Bois, 1963

W.E.B. Du Bois, born in 1868, was an advocate for other black Americans in a variety of ways throughout his life. In 1903, he published the book The Souls of Black Folk, an influential text that introduced the idea of “double consciousness,” a concept that says African Americans are always contending with viewing themselves through the lens of the surrounding racist society. He was a leader in the Niagara Movement, a civil rights organization. Soon after, he helped found the NAACP and served as the editor of the organization’s monthly journal. Over the course of his life, he fought against lynching, Jim Crow laws, and many other forms of discrimination. Later in life, W.E.B. Du Bois moved to Ghana, where he died in 1963. Though he wrote this prayer (and a whole collection of prayers for students at Atlanta University, Prayers for Dark People), Du Bois did not identify with any particular church or creed as an adult. 

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 Frances, Jim, Eunice, Jane and Bruce.

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 Belachew – today is his baptismal anniversary!

For Donald – today is his birthday!

For Belachew & Linda and Marti & Austin – today is their wedding anniversary!

For all the blessings of this life.

For our dioceses in the Anglican Nimule Area (South Sudan), Arkansas (The Episcopal Church), Jerusalem (Jerusalem & Middle East.

 For all who have died: especially Hugh, Tom, Louis, Michael and Mary Ann.

For one another.

Something to share

Not Like a Dove

Come Holy Spirit, come
like a red eft creeping out
from under wet leaves
crossing the traveled highway
at night after rain.
Come like the brown anole comes north
unexpected in bananas or limes;
like a gecko hunting roaches on a wall.
Come like Chameleon;
like Iguana still as deep green death
flittering a cloven tongue.
Come like Komodo parting the ways
with your stinking breath. Come
clear the carrion from the isle.
Come Holy Spirit
come like the Dragon remembered of old
rattling and clanking on golden wings.
Seize our treasures for your glittering hoard.
Burn away all that will burn.

Mary F. C. Pratt

News & Updates

Today Denise retires from her work in NY State government. A prayer for her:

Gracious God, bless and preserve me during this time of transition. Day by day, guide me and give me what is needed, friends to cheer my way, and a clear vision of that to which you are now calling me. Be present in my journey. I know that you are the way, the truth and the life. Amen.

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 weeks 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+