Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Saturday, August 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

…be awake to the Life that is loving you
and sing your prayer, laugh your prayer,
dance your prayer, run and weep and
sweat your prayer,
sleep your prayer, eat your prayer,
paint, sculpt hammer and read your prayer,
sweep, dig, rake, drive and hoe your prayer,
garden, and farm, and build and clean your prayer,
wash, iron, vacuum sew and embroider and pickle your prayer,
compute, touch, bend and fold but never delete
or mutilate your prayer.

Learn and play your prayer,
work and rest your prayer,
fast and feast your prayer,
argue, talk, whisper, listen and shout your prayer,
groan and moan and spit and sneeze your prayer,
swim and hunt and cook your prayer,
digest and become your prayer,

Release and recover your prayer.
Breathe your prayer,
Be your prayer . . . .

And so you are praying.
So you do what you be,
and all your being is blessed
and all your life is a prayer….
– Alla Renée Bozarth

Alla Renée Bozarth is one of the Philadelphia Eleven – the first women to be ordained priests in the Episcopal Church in 1974, before the General Convention had authorized the ordination of women to the priesthood. Prior to her ordination, she earned a Ph.D. from Northwestern University in the performing arts. Much of her ministry work has centered on Wisdom House, an ecumenical spirituality center that she founded in Minnesota and eventually moved to Oregon. She is the author of many books, many of which are poetry; she also wrote Womanpriest: A Personal Odyssey, about her experience being one of the first women to be a priest in our denomination.

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, Donald.

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:  Marti, Sid, Vicki, Jean, Cindi, Mary Frances, Debbie and Joe.

For all the blessings of this life.

For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion:  Kentucky (The Episcopal Church), Kericho (Kenya), Khartoum (Sudan).

For all who have died:  especially Edwin.

For one another.

Something to share

The Traveling Onion

When I think how far the onion has traveled
just to enter my stew today, I could kneel and praise
all small forgotten miracles,
crackly paper peeling on the drainboard,
pearly layers in smooth agreement,
the way the knife enters onion
and onion falls apart on the chopping block,
a history revealed.
And I would never scold the onion
for causing tears.
It is right that tears fall
for something small and forgotten.
How at meal, we sit to eat,
commenting on texture of meat or herbal aroma
but never on the translucence of onion,
now limp, now divided,
or its traditionally honorable career:
For the sake of others,
disappear.

Naomi Shihab Nye

Tomorrow morning August 23rd at 9:00am, join us for the celebration of Holy Eucharist at Saint Stephen’s Church.  To help you understand what to expect please click on this link:

Tomorrow morning, August 23rd at 11:15am, join us for the celebration of Holy Eucharist live-streamed from the National Cathedral.  This is another way in which we can worship together albeit remotely. All you have to do is click on the link below, and it should take you to the service.

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 linkjames.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+