Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Wednesday, July 8, 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

Let me live today.
Let me be open to the miracle of this day.
Let me breathe the best of today.
Let me not miss the heart of today.
Let me find the gift of today,
hidden like a jewel in rubble of care, duty, and detail.
Let me pause to hear
the steady beat of the heart of God–
hoping, aching, sorrowing, expectant, patient,
despairing heart of God.
Listen, listen.
Do you hear it?
Ever so faint but steady, steady,
rhythmic organ, strong muscle,
thumping, beating, pumping, sustaining, encompassing,
wildly dancing heart of God.
Let me live this day, aware, open, listening, breathing, alive.

The Rev. Virginia Going

This prayer was found in the collection Women’s Uncommon Prayers: Our Lives Revealed, Nurtured, Celebrated. Work on this book began with a meeting of the Episcopal Church’s Council of Women’s Ministries in 1999. The collection’s preface states that they had “a vision of Episcopal women speaking authentically with one another and with their church at large; a vision of women sharing the richness and diversity of their spirituality.” The Rev. Virginia Going is an Episcopal deacon from the Diocese of North Carolina.

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 Robert – today is his birthday!

For all the blessings of this life.

For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion: North West Australia (Australia), Awka (Nigeria), Kafanchan (Nigeria)

For all who have died:  especially Peg, Roger, Elsie, Louise, Ada, Dorothy, Agnes and George.

For one another.

Something to share

Helping the Morning

After the graveside, after the ride home, after
a winter of drought, the chain
and padlock on my heart,

morning shows up at my bedside,
almost too late, like a big sister
holding a glass of water

and I drink, glancing through the window
at the tiny red barn flung
into the lap of the brown valley below.

I am amazed at the silent, terrible wonder
of my health. I am giddy at the lack of war.
I want to help the morning.

I pray the bedpost, the windowpanes.
I put our children on two doorknobs.
Our sick friends in mirrors.

Like the aperture of a camera, the morning opens
and keeps opening until the room is filled
with rosy light and I could believe

anything: that grass might turn green again,
that cloud the size of my hand
might swell, might drift in, bringing rain.

Jeanne Murray Walker

News & Updates

If you are planning to come to the Eucharist on Sunday and do not own a prayerbook, here is a free PDF version you can download:

Book of Common Prayer PDF

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 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. Our first Eucharistic Ingathering will be on July 12th at 9:00 am.  Please see our website for further information: https://st-stephens.church. All other 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+