Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Monday, November 16, 2020

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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

What is it to be a companion of Jesus today? It is to engage, under the standard of the cross, in the crucial struggle of our time: the struggle for faith and that struggle for faith and that struggle for justice which it includes.

Father Ignacio Ellacuria, 1989

On the morning of this day, 31 years ago, news photographers in El Salvador recorded a scene of abomination: the bodies of six Jesuits priests strewn across the garden lawn of the University of Central America. Father Ellacuria, the Rector of the University, was among those who were brutally murdered. Those seeking a meaning for their deaths could look to the Latin American church’s option for the poor or to the Jesuits’ commitment to social justice. But the immediate context was the fratricidal war in El Salvador.

For years the Jesuits of the university were a thorn in the side of the military and ruling elite. This was not because they supported the rebels or were communists, but because they had consistently denounced the injustice and repression that fed the bitter war, and because they had sought to promote a negotiated settlement to the conflict. Father Ellacuria had earned the enmity of the military command with his frequent denunciation of their reign of terror.

Ellacuria was increasingly moved to articulate the meaning of faith and the gospel from the perspective of the suffering poor. He liked to speak of the “crucified peoples” of history. He compared the poor with Isaiah’s Suffering Servant. In their lives he discerned the ongoing presence and passion of Christ – suffering because of the sins of the world. In this light, the task of the Christian was not simply to contemplate the mystery of suffering, but to “take the crucified down from the cross” – to join them in compassion and solidarity.

From Our Prayers of the People 

For the special needs and concerns of our congregation. 

We remember people throughout the world: in places of war and strife, especially refugees and all victims of violence and oppression.

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 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:  Mary Frances, Jim, Eunice, Jane, Bruce, Pauline, John, Audrey, Bill, Stephanie, Hank, Nancy.

For those who are homebound: Stephen, Joan, Janet and Marilyn.

Our Government Leaders: Donald Trump, President of the United States; Joseph Biden, President-elect 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 emeritus 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: Budd,  Jean, Cindi, Mary Frances, Debbie, Joe.

For Dennie & Tom – today is their wedding anniversary!

For all the blessings of this life.

For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion:  Sabongidda-Ora (Nigeria),  Dublin & Glendalough (Ireland).

For all who have died:  especially William and Dorothy.

For one another.

Something to share

Pie Jesu

Pie Jesu, Domine,                            Merciful Jesus, Lord,

dona eis requiem.                           Grant unto them rest.

Done, dona,                                      Grant them, grant them.

dona eis requiem                             Grant unto them rest,

sempiternam requiem.                      Eternal rest.

Gabriel Fauré

News and Updates

The Stewardship campaign is beginning with the mailing of pledge materials, which you should receive this coming week. Please read these materials carefully and prayerfully reflect on your contribution. If you do not receive the mailing by the end of next week, please let us know. We need the participation of all members if we are to sustain our ministries, meet unexpected expenditures and continue to provide support for others in our community. You can mail us your pledge or drop it off at the church.  If possible, we hope you can submit your pledge before Thanksgiving. Thank you.

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: james.ross.mcd@gmail.com.

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 Becky for the link:  becky.holder@gmail.com)

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. 

Our church campus is only partially open due to the current pandemic.  Please see our website for further informationhttps://st-stephens.church/. Most other parish meetings and gatherings are canceled and postponed until further notice.

Our new office email is: office@st-stephens.church.

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.