Staying Safe and Staying Connected
Good Morning Saint Stephen’s Church,
We continue our life of daily prayer. The Lord be with you!
O Lord, even though I cannot see my way,Rev. Dr. Renita Weems
still I hear your voice calling me in the whirlwind.
Things are falling apart and coming together
at the same time.
Fear and calm overtake me.
Feelings of unworthiness and divine boldness
But I hear you beckoning me, telling me to get up,
reach out, look up, step out.
I hear, and I obey.
Rev. Dr. Renita Weems is an ordained minister in the African Methodist Episcopal Church and a scholar on the Hebrew Bible. Her work has been influential to the field of womanist theology. Womanism, a term that originates with Alice Walker, refers to an ideology that centers the experiences of black women in its quest for wholeness for all people. Weems has taught at Vanderbilt University’s Divinity School and Spelman College and served as an academic dean at American Baptist College. This prayer comes from her book Showing Mary: How Women Can Share Prayers, Wisdom, and the Blessings of God.
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, Pauline, John, Jane, Molly and David.
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: Sid, Vicki, Jean, Cindi, Mary Frances, Debbie, Joe, Matt and Lisa.
For David, Budd, Carole – today is their baptismal anniversary!
For all the blessings of this life.
For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion: North East India (North India), Atlanta (The Episcopal Church), Kabba (Nigeria).
For all who have died: especially Roger, Elsie, Louise, Ada, Dorothy, Agnes and George.
For one another.
Something to share
May we grow back not to what was but instead toward what we can become.Contemplative Monk
Idiot Psalm 12
(A psalm of Isaac, amid uncommon darkness)
O Being both far distant and most near,Scott Cairns
O Lover embracing all unlovable, O Tender
Tether binding us together, and binding, yea
and tenderly, Your Person to ourselves,
Being both beyond our ken, and kindred, One
whose dire energies invest such clay as ours
with patent animation, O Secret One secreting
life anew into our every tissue moribund,
afresh unto our stale and stalling craft,
grant in this obscurity a little light.
News & Updates
Graduations and Commencements! – Have you or someone you know graduated this season? We would like to recognize all who have graduated in the last academic year, from Pre-school to Post-Doctorate. Please send us the names of graduates. If you or someone you know is going off to pursue further studies, please let us know that too. Please let me know: email@example.com.
Jo: Our grand-daughter graduated from Walt Whitman High School in June. She plans to go to Washington University, in St. Louis, Missouri in the fall.
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.