Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Monday, February 15, 2021

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

O LORD, the hard-won miles

Have worn my stumbling feet:

Oh, soothe me with thy smiles,

And make my life complete.

The thorns were thick and keen

Where’er I trembling trod;

The way was long between

My wounded feet and God.

Where healing waters flow

Do thou my footsteps lead.

My heart is aching so;

Thy gracious balm I need.

“A Prayer” by Paul Laurence Dunbar

Paul Laurence Dunbar was a notable African-American writer, born in 1872. He died at age 33 in 1906. He wrote across a variety of genres, including poetry, novels, short stories, and lyrics. He was the lyricist for the first African-American musical on Broadway, In Dahomey. 

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 and Bruce, John, Audrey, Marissa, Melanie, Kathy, Joe, Debbie T, Donald, Nick, Roberta, Beth.

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

For our Government Leaders: Joseph Biden, President of the United States; Andrew Cuomo, Governor of New York State; Gary McCarthy, Mayor of Schenectady.

For 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.

For those who are imprisoned: those particularly vulnerable at this time, especially the women in the Schenectady County Jail.

For Members who request our prayers for strength and healing:  Dave, Ruth, Cindi, Mary Frances, Debbie, Joe.

For Leah  – today is her baptismal anniversary!

For all the blessings of this life.

 For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion:  The Diocese of South Ankole – The Church of the Province of Uganda.

For all who have died:  Elizabeth,  Charlotte, Judith,  Joan, Kay.

For one another.

Something to share

the preacher ruminates behind the sermon

I think it must be lonely to be God.

Nobody loves a master. No. Despite

The bright hosannas, bright dear-Lords, and bright

Determined reverence of Sunday eyes.

Picture Jehovah striding through the hall

Of his importance, creatures running out

From servant-corners to acclaim, to shout

Appreciation of His merit’s glare.

But who walks with Him? – dares to take His arm,

To slap Him on the shoulder, tweak His ear,

Buy Him a Coca-Cola or a beer,

Pooh-pooh His politics, call Him a fool?

Perhaps – who knows? – He tires of looking down,

Those eyes are never lifted. Never straight.

Perhaps He sometimes tires of being great

In solitude. Without a hand to hold.

Gwendolyn Brooks

News and Updates 

Episcopal Relief & Development – Lent begins this Wednesday, February 17, and you are invited to journey alongside Episcopal Relief & Development for a Lenten experience of healing and growth. I encourage you to take a journey of faith with the 2021 Lenten Meditations by subscribing here, or downloading/printing them here.  Meditations are available in both English and Spanish. You can also quickly find the Meditations by going to episcopalrelief.org/lent.

Reminder

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 information: https://st-stephens.church/. Most parish meetings and gatherings are canceled and postponed until further notice.

Our 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.