Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Wednesday, September 16, 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

Amen. I yearn to skip over time, to instantly be transported to a place of peace and hope and love.

To once again feel the sacred Amen in life.

Yet, here we are: in grief, in sadness, and in pain.

Amen? We ask each other how we can possibly glimpse joy again. When our souls will no longer feel as though they have been collectively trampled. We are wondering how we will be able to move forward in love. How will we be able to glimpse joy?

Amen to finding the persistence to be open to the love that is surely there.

May Amen punctuate our current suffering. Give us a point at which to breathe and reflect.

A resting place before we move forward.

Amen. May we connect with one another to discover hope. May we feel the love that will sustain us.

May we discover a way to allow our souls to be filled with peace and hope and love.

Amen. May it be so.

Linnea Nelson

Linnea Nelson has worked as Director of Religious Exploration for a Unitarian Universalist congregation and a school administrator and is now executive director of Wellspring, which provides programming to congregations and individuals promoting spiritual growth. This prayer was found in the book Conversations With the Sacred: A Collection of Prayers edited by Manish Mishra-Marzetti and Jennifer Kelleher.

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 those affected by the wild fires in the west: for those who are grieving the loss of homes, possessions and loved ones, that their safety and security may be restored.

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 all historical acts of injustice and oppression: especially those perpetuated against native, Black, Hispanic and various Asian Americans in this abundant land, that we may recognize racism in ourselves, in our church, in our society, and the times we have failed to take action.

For those on the Parish Prayer Chain: .  Sylvia, Irene, Jeanne, Chris, Theresa, Emily, Bridget, Josh, Amy, Sid, Edwina and her husband, Donald, Mark,  the Bassi, Crevelling and Dewey families.

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.

Members who request our prayers for strength and healing: Sid, Jean, Cindi, Mary Frances, Debbie and Joe.

For Jo Ann – today is her birthday!

For all the blessings of this life.

For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion:  Owo (Nigeria), Central Florida (The Episcopal Church).

For all who have died:  especially Marian, Robert, Lucie, Margaret and Ruth.

For one another.

Something to share

Passing a Truck Full of Chickens at Night on Highway Eighty

What struck me first was their panic.
Some were pulled by the wind from moving
to the ends of the stacked cages,
some had their heads blown through the bars—
and could not get them in again.
Some hung there like that—dead—
their own feathers blowing, clotting
in their faces. Then
I saw the one that made me slow some—
I lingered there beside her for five miles.
She had pushed her head through the space
between bars—to get a better view.
She had the look of a dog in the back
of a pickup, that eager look of a dog
who knows she’s being taken along.
She craned her neck.
She looked around, watched me, then
strained to see over the car—strained
to see what happened beyond.
That is the chicken I want to be.

Jane Mead

News & Updates

A message from the Myron Street Farmers Market (Chris Jones):

There are two peach trees in my backyard.  Almost all of the peaches have been removed (by me and the squirrels) from one of them, but the other has a good crop of ripe, juicy, tasty peaches. I have made jam, peach  pie, peach cobbler, and peach butter. We have feasted on ripe peaches over ice cream, in our breakfast cereal, and just plain sliced. It’s been the best year that I can remember for peaches.

I invite you to have some.  There is a tray of ripe peaches in my kitchen. There is a good crop of ripe peaches on the second tree. If you would like to pick some, please come by and do so. Or stop by and I’ll give you some (or all) from my tray. 

It would be helpful (but not necessary) that you call ahead. Tree ripened peaches are special. My small peach orchard was started years ago so that I could pick a ripe peach. If you don’t come by and get some, the excess is going to be buried.

++++++++++

In Schenectady schools all classes for 7-12 grades are returning to virtual learning. District officials still haven’t received an order of Chromebook laptops they placed in March, and there is a real need for Tablets, Chromebooks and Laptops. They do NOT have to be the latest and greatest, but the actual devices are needed. If you can donate even one device, please contact Viki Brooks at vikibrooks2017@gmail.com

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+