Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Friday, September 25, 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

Vast Lord, we beseech you for all the peoples everywhere and for all the needs, hidden and manifest, that afflict them and us—the aches and fevers of the body that they may be healed, the mind’s terror that it shall be removed far from us, the heart’s loneliness that it shall be comforted. As you are just, bring your righteousness against all within us that damages or disdains life, and your jubilance to all that upholds it. As you are merciful, persuade us to the ways of compassion for each other and for all persons far and near; through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Arnold Kenseth and Richard P. Unsworth

This prayer comes from a book Kenseth and Unsworth wrote together, Prayers for Worship Leaders, published in 1978. At the time, Arnold Kenseth was pastor of South Congregational Church in Amherst, MA; he was also a widely published poet. Kenseth died in 2003. He served at South Congregational for 40 years, before retiring in 1989, and published nine books. Richard Unsworth was a Chaplain and Professor of Religion at Smith College. He wrote the biography A Portrait of Pacifists about André and Magda Trocmé, a French couple who were pivotal in organizing safe houses for Jewish refugees during the Holocaust. Unsworth died in 2016. 

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 wildfires in the west and hurricanes in the Gulf: 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:  Charles, Joe, Doug, Debbie, Cindi, Doug, Hugh, Debby, Joan, Hank, Joan and Craig.

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 all the blessings of this life.

For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion:  Central Zambia (Central Africa).

For all who have died:  especially Kathryn, Reuben, Timothy, Dennis, Elsie, Robert, Dorothy and Helen.

For one another.

Something to share

Part of Eve’s Discussion

It was like the moment when a bird decides not to eat from your hand,
and flies, just before it flies, the moment the rivers seem to still
and stop because a storm is coming, but there is no storm, as when
a hundred starlings lift and bank together before they wheel and drop,
very much like the moment, driving on bad ice, when it occurs to you
your car could spin, just before it slowly begins to spin, like
the moment just before you forgot what it was you were about to say,
it was like that, and after that, it was still like that, only all the time.

Marie Howe

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,
he 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+