Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Wednesday, March 10, 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

Let nothing disturb you;

Nothing dismay you;

All things pass,

But God never changes.

Whoever has God lacks nothing:

If you have only God, you have more than enough.

Teresa of Avila, 1582

Teresa of Avila is recognized with a feast day in the Episcopal Church on October 15th and has been granted the title “Doctor of the Church” in the Catholic tradition, a designation for saints who have made major contributions to theology. Teresa, born in 1515 in Spain, initially joined a Carmelite convent before establishing a reformed Carmelite order. Teresa founded 17 convents. Her writings, including The Way of Perfection and The Interior Castle, are considered influential texts in Christian spirituality and mysticism.

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:  Diana, Caleb, June, Ruth, David, Gerry, Kathy Nick, Roberta, Beth, Walker, Zee, Gerald.

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, retired 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:  Marilyn, Priscilla, Ruth, Cindi , Mary Frances , Debbie, Joe.

For Diane – today is her birthday!

For all the blessings of this life.

 For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion:  The Diocese of Atlanta – The Episcopal Church (IV (4) Province).

For all who have died:  Galina, Mabel, Julia, Edna, Vera, Florence.

For one another.

Something to share

Hope

It hovers in dark corners

before the lights are turned on,

     it shakes sleep from its eyes

     and drops from mushroom gills,

          it explodes in the starry heads

          of dandelions turned sages,

               it sticks to the wings of green angels

               that sail from the tops of maples.

It sprouts in each occluded eye

of the many-eyed potato,

     it lives in each earthworm segment

     surviving cruelty,

          it is the motion that runs

          from the eyes to the tail of a dog,

               it is the mouth that inflates the lungs

               of the child that has just been born.

It is the singular gift

we cannot destroy in ourselves,

the argument that refutes death,

the genius that invents the future,

all we know of God.

It is the serum which makes us swear

not to betray one another;

it is in this poem, trying to speak.

             –   Lisel Mueller  

News and Updates

Episcopal Relief & Development partners with the Anglican dioceses in SRI LANKA, the ecumenical National Christian Council of Sri Lanka and the Ecumenical Church Loan Fund on both short and long-term projects:

·         supporting efforts to build collaborative communities in the aftermath of decades of political conflict, such as training for community-led development and conflict resolution, empowering women and war-affected individuals through micro-finance and psychosocial support.

·         training staff and clergy to create disaster preparedness plans and engage their communities in building resilience and minimizing risk.

·         equipping other denominational leaders with knowledge and tools that help communities to prepare for and respond to disasters including the COVID-19 pandemic.  Diocesan staff and volunteers are distributing food, while following best practices for physical distancing, to plantation and day workers who have lost income due to the virus and shutdowns.  Additionally, the Diocese of Colombo is helping to sanitize schools and to provide them with PPE and thermometers which allow the schools to open safely and adhere to government regulations.

As a Lenten offering why not support Episcopal Relief & Development’s response to the COVID-19 Pandemic?  Please consider making a donation. You may do this through St. Stephen’s.

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.

We continue to follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html and the NY  Department of Public Health https://www.health.ny.gov/ for information, updates, and guidance

Be careful what you read online. There are reports of false information circulating in an attempt to create fear and confusion. It is critical to discern what and how something is said as well as what is not said. And, God forbid, always remember – any online or texted-based solicitation from me for money is A SCAM. Do not reply to such messages. Delete them.

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.