Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Thursday, February 18, 2021

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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

God, you created the world with your dream of what it could be. You dreamed of people and plants, animal and air, all living in right relationship to you and to each other. Today we offer to you our dream for a world which is not threatened by a changing climate which harms our atmosphere, which wounds the poorest and most vulnerable, which leaves this wonderful planet in poor shape for future generations. Help us to listen to your voice, your Word, and your creation. Amen.

Joan Weber

Joan Weber has served as a staff member for the Center for Ministry Development, a Catholic non-profit that does faith formation work with youth and families, and previously served as the president of the National Catholic Young Adult Ministry Association. She holds a master’s degree in pastoral ministry from Creighton University. This prayer was found in the collection God’s Good Earth: Praise and Prayers for Creation, compiled by Anne & Jeffrey Rowthorn.

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 Laurie, Corrie, Doris, Judy, Anne, Louise, Gertrude, Laurel, Greg, Joan, Justin, Michael Curry, William Daniel, Gary, Carmeen, Joe, Earl.

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 James and Jane – today is their birthday!

For all the blessings of this life.

 For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion:  The Diocese of Antsiranana – The Church of the Province of the Indian Ocean.

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

For one another.

Something to share

From “Love Letter”

I hate you, God.

Love, Madeleine

I write my message on water

and at bedtime I tiptoe upstairs

and let it flow under your door.

When I am angry with you

I know that you are there

even if you do not answer my knock

even when your butler opens the door an inch

and flaps his thousand wings in annoyance

at such untoward interruption

and says that the master is not at home.

I cannot turn the other cheek

It takes all the strength I have

To keep my fist from hitting back

the soldiers shot the baby

the little boys trample the old woman

the gutters are filled with groans…

I’m turning in my ticket

and my letter of introduction.

You’re supposed to do the knocking. Why do you burst my heart?

I take hammer and nails

and tack my message on two crossed pieces of wood:

Dear God

is it too much to ask you

to bother to be?

Just show your hindquarters

and let me hear you roar.

Love, Madeleine

Madeline L’Engle

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.