Staying Safe and Staying Connected
Good Morning Saint Stephen’s Church,
We continue our life of daily prayer. The Lord be with you!
Let the healing grace of your love, O Lord, so transform me that I may play my part in the transfiguration of the world from a place of suffering, death and corruption to a realm of infinite light, joy and love. Make me so obedient to your Spirit that my life may become a living prayer, and a witness to your unfailing presence.Martin Israel, 2007
Martin Israel was a British pathologist, Anglican priest, spiritual director and the author of numerous books on Christian life and teaching. Born in South Africa, he learned about Christianity from his family’s black African servants and was deeply impressed by the image of Jesus on the cross which somehow convinced him that his life’s work would, in some way, be about reconciliation. In his capacity as an Anglican priest he was a lecturer, personal counsellor and organizer of religious retreats. He was drawn to various mystical traditions and the works of people like Carl Jung, Teilhard de Chardin, and Martin Buber. Martin became widely known as the author of many books dealing with spiritual issues from a mystical Christian perspective.
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: Dave’s mom, Joe, Doug, Debbie, Cindi, Doug, Hugh and Debby.
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 Jane – today is her baptismal anniversary!
For Susan – today is her birthday!
For all the blessings of this life.
For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion: Northern Malawi (Central Africa), Barbados (West Indies), Kampala (Uganda).
For all who have died: especially Barbara Dobbins Stratton and Betty Troy.
For one another.
Something to share
The Rule of St. Benedict is a guide to the great ideas and questions of life in every age. . . Instead of a power that is exploitative, (Benedict) calls for a power that is open and developing. He calls for an obedience that say, “I am not my own God. God is God.” He treats the question of human dignity in the face of a world that is highly oppressive. He talks about community in a time when individualism is rampant.Joan Chittister, O.S.B., Wisdom Distilled from the Daily: Living the Rule of St. Benedict Today
The Cure at Troy, excerptSophocles, trans. Seamus Heaney
Human beings suffer,
they torture one another,
they get hurt and get hard.
History says, Don’t hope
on this side of the grave.
But then, once in a lifetime
the longed for tidal wave
of justice can rise up,
and hope and history rhyme.
So hope for a great sea-change
on the far side of revenge.
Believe that a further shore
is reachable from here.
Believe in miracles
and cures and healing wells.
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: 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. 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!
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.