Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Wednesday, July 29, 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

Colorful Creator, God of mystery,
thank you for the artist teaching us to see
glimpses of the meaning of the commonplace,
vision of the holy in each human face.
Harmony of ages, God of list’ning ear,
thank you for composer tuning us to hear
echoes of the Gospel in the songs we sing,
sounds of love and longing from the deepest spring.

Author of our journey, God of near and far,
praise for tale and drama telling who we are,
stripping to the essence struggles of our day,
times of change and conflict when we choose our way.
God of truth and beauty, Poet of the Word,
may we be creators by the Spirit stirred,
open to your presence in our joy and strife,
vessels of the holy coursing through our life.
– “Colorful Creator” by Ruth Duck

Ruth Duck is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ. She is known as an advocate for inclusive language in worship, having written resources such as Bread for the Journey: Resources for Worship and Everflowing Streams: Songs for Worship as well as a variety of published hymn texts, such as “Colorful Creator.” Duck is retired from her role as Professor of Worship at Garett-Evangelical Theological Seminary.

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:  Sylvia, Irene, Jeanne, Chris, Theresa, Emily, Bridget, Josh, Amy, Sid, Edwina and her husband.

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 and Joe.

For all the blessings of this life.

For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion: Nyahururu (Kenya) and Birmingham (England).

For all who have died:  especially Dorothy, Jean, Daisy, Barbara, Rose, Margaret and Mary.

For one another.

Something to share

Marilyn shares this from the Daughters of the King:

Let us pray together Psalm I as we safely abide in the presence of God. (NIV Version)

1, Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.

2. I will say of the LORD, “He is my-refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust”

3. Surely he will save you from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence.

4. He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.

5. You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day,

6. nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the plague that destroys c midday.

7. A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you

8. You will only observe with your eyes and see the punishment of the wicked

9. If you say, ‘The LORD is my refuge,” and you make the Most High your dwelling,

10. no harm will overtake you, no disaster will come new-your tent.

11. For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your way.

12. they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot again a stone.

13. You will tread on the lion and the cobra; you will trample the great lion and the serpent.

14. “Because he loves me,” says the LORD, “I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.

15. He will call on me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him.

16. With long life I will satisfy him and show him my salvation.”

Drink water from the spring where horses drink. The horse will never drink bad water.
Lay your bed where the cat sleeps.
Eat the fruit that has been touched by a worm.
Boldly pick the mushroom on which the insects sit.
Plant the tree where the mole digs.
Build your house where the snake sits to warm itself.
Dig your fountain where the birds hide from heat.
Go to sleep and wake up at the same time with the birds – you will reap all of the days golden grains.
Eat more green – you will have strong legs and a resistant heart, like the brings of the forest.
Swim often and you will feel on earth like the fish in the water.
Look at the sky as often as possible and your thoughts will become light and clear.
Be quiet a lot, speak little- and silence will come in your heart, and your spirit will be calm and full of peace.

Saint Seraphim of Savor, a renowned Russian saint

This is God’s Table: Finding Church Beyond the Walls

Working in the garden each week supplied me with plenty of metaphors–new life from tiny seeds, pulling weeds to give space for growth, celebrating the harvest. But it was the compost heap that continued to be a guiding metaphor to me for this era of church….

God is the Divine Composter. She takes all that has been, all that we’ve used, our best bits and our slimy bits, the endings in our lives and the pain of loss, the tantalizing crumbs from our joyful moments and the leftovers we’ve kept for too long. God takes all of that and says, ‘Okay, great, let’s see what we can do with it next!’

Anna Woofenden

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.

If you need a prayerbook, and are not in a position to purchase one, please contact me: james.ross.mcd@gmail.com. I will make sure you have your own Book of Common Prayer. 

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)

Our church campus is closed, except for our Eucharistic Ingathering on Sundays 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+