Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Saturday, September 26, 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

Jesus   sweet Jesus  my dear  my darling my Lord  my Savior my honey-drop my balm….

Ah, who cannot love you, lovely Jesus? For within you alone are all things gathered that can ever make anyone worthy of love….

if I will love anyone for their generosity, I will love you, Jesus Christ, more generous than anyone. For other generous men give all kinds of outer things; but you, sweet Jesus, so gave yourself for me that you did not know how to withhold your heart’s blood. Lover never gave lover a richer love-gift. And you, who first gave me your whole self, my beloved, you have promised me – in exchange for the gift of my whole self to you – to rule on your right hand, crowned with you. Then who is more generous than you? Who is more worthy to be loved for generosity than you, my life-love?

Ah, Jesus, sweet Jesus, grant that love of you be all my pleasure.

But generosity is worth little where wisdom is wanting. And if I will love any man for his wisdom, there is no one wiser than you, who are called wisdom by your Father in Heaven. For through you who are wisdom, he created all this world, and orders and divides it as seems best. Within you, my beloved life, is hidden the hoard of all wisdom, as the book witnesses (Proverbs 3:19).

Ah, Jesus, sweet Jesus, grant that love of you be all my pleasure.

  The Wooing of Our Lord

The specific author of The Wooing of Our Lord is unknown, but the text, written in Middle English, was probably composed sometime between 1220 and 1250 and was included among works meant to be used by anchorites and anchoresses, people who chose to live a solitary Christian life. Anchorites and anchoresses were distinct from other forms of solitary religious life in that they lived in cells attached to churches. This excerpt was taken from a translation found in the book, Anchoritic Spirituality: Ancrene Wisse and Associated Works translated and introduced by Anne Savage and Nicholas Watson.

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

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, Joe

For all the blessings of this life.

For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion:  Paraguay (South America), Central Zimbabwe (Central Africa), Kobe (Japan).

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

For one another.

Something to share

Noah and Joan

It’s not that I’m proud of the fact

that twenty percent of Americans believe

that Noah (of Noah’s Ark) was married

to Joan of Arc. It’s true. I’ll admit it—

Americans are pretty dumb and forgetful

when it comes to history. And they’re notorious

for interpreting the Bible to suit themselves.

You don’t have to tell me we can’t spell anymore—

Ark or Arc, it’s all the same to us.

But think about it, just a second, timeline aside,

it’s not such an awful mistake. The real Noah’s missus

was never even given a name. She was sort of milquetoasty,

a shadowy figure lugging sacks of oats up a plank.

I mean, Joan could have helped Noah build that ark

in her sensible slacks and hiking boots. She was good with swords

and, presumably, power tools. I think Noah and Joan

might have been a good match, visionaries

once mistaken for flood-obsessed and heretic.

Never mind France wasn’t France yet—

all the continents probably blended together,

one big mush. Those Bible days would have been

good for Joan, those early times when premonitions

were common, when animals popped up

out of nowhere, when people were getting cured

left and right. Instead of battles and prisons

and iron cages, Joan could have cruised

the Mediterranean, wherever the flood waters took that ark.

And Noah would have felt more like Dr. Doolittle,

a supportive Joan saying, “Let’s not waste any time!

Hand over those boat blueprints, honey!”

All that sawing and hammering would have helped

calm her nightmares of mean kings and crowns,

a nasty futuristic place called England.

She’d convince Noah to become vegetarian.

She’d live to be much older than 19, those parakeets

and antelope leaping about her like children.

  Denise Duhamel

News & Updates

Tomorrow morning September 27th 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, September 27th 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,

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+