Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Tuesday, March 23, 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

It is spring, Lord,

and the land is coming up green again,

           unfolding

                       outside my well-drawn boundaries

                                   and urgent schedules.

And there is the mystery

           and the smile of it.

The willows are dripping honey color into the rivers,

and the mother birds are busy in manger nests,

and I am learning again

           that “for everything there is a season

                       and a time for every matter under heaven.”

O Lord, you have sketched the lines of spring.

Be with me in my unfolding.                         

Ted Loder

Rev. Theodore Loder is a retired Methodist minister who served First United Methodist Church of Germantown, in Philadelphia, for almost four decades. He is an author of many books, including collections of prayers. 

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, and for those administering the vaccination, 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:  Waid, Dan, Hugh, Debby, Irene, Jeanne, Theresa, Josh, Amy, Greg, Craig, Donald, 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 Travis –  today is Travis’ baptismal anniversary!

For Marti – today is her birthday!

For all the blessings of this life.

 For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion:  The Diocese of Bakuru – The Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) (Jos Province).

For all who have died:   Glen, Charles, Ward, Virginia, Louise, Theodore, Irwin, Eleanor. 

For one another.

Something to share

Spring

Something new in the air today, perhaps the struggle of the bud

to become a leaf. Nearly two weeks late it invaded the air but

then what is two weeks to life herself? On a cool night there is

a break from the struggle of becoming. I suppose that’s why we

sleep. In a childhood story they spoke of the land of enchant-

ment. We crawl to it, we short-lived mammals, not realizing that

we are already there. To the gods the moon is the entire moon

but to us it changes second by second because we are always fish

in the belly of the whale of earth. We are encased and can’t stray

from the house of our bodies. I could say that we are released,

but I don’t know, in our private night when our souls explode

into a billion fragments then calmly regather in a black pool in

the forest, far from the cage of flesh, the unremitting “I.” This

was a dream and in dreams we are forever alone

walking the ghost road beyond our lives.

Of late I see waking as another chance at

spring.

          –   Jim Harrison

 

News and Updates

The April Messenger (another try!): 

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1-kekmOUb5YgfwNefrNZKSuAckj3pnY6o/view?usp=sharing

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 or 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.