Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Saturday, June 5, 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 God,

teach us what it means to live in grace — not just for ourselves,

but for the collective whole.

We have been individuals for far too long,

and in that individualism, we’ve forgotten how to hold each other.

We need to return again to a love that holds together community —

A love based on the way we belong to each other,

the practice of Ubuntu, a return to our wholeness

based on compassion toward others.

And in that returning, we find that you are always bringing us back,

Not to a world in which we do not see color or class,

but into a world in which we see it and believe that

sacred love is the imprint on everyone and everything, anyway.

O God,

in a heavy world, we need to remember that we belong to each other,

And in that remembering, that we belong to you.

Teach us.

Teach us because the future depends on it.

Remind us, we pray.

Amen.

       –  Kaitlin Curtice

Kaitlin Curtice is an author and public speaker who focuses on Indigenous spirituality, Christian faith, and the process of decolonizing the church. Her books are NATIVE: Identity, Belonging, and Rediscovering God and Glory Happening: Finding the Divine in Everyday Places.  She is an enrolled citizen of the Potawatomi Nation. This prayer is an excerpt of a longer prayer titled “A Prayer for A Heavy World” published in the magazine Sojourners.

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 comfort and healing for all who are affected by the Coronavirus around the world:  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 perpetrated 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 a reverence for the earth as God’s own creation: that we may use its resources rightly in the service of others and to God’s honor and glory, and for wisdom, guidance, and persistence as we face the challenges of climate change and work for the flourishing and health of all the earth.

For those on the Parish Prayer Chain:  Danny, Charlotte, Diana, Caleb, June, Ruth, David, Kathy Nick, Roberta, Beth, Walker, Warren, Steven, Susan, Ann, John, Stephen.

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; 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:  Eunice, Vincent, Priscilla, Ruth, Cindi, Mary Frances, Debbie, Joe.

For all the blessings of this life.

 For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion:  The Diocese of Carlisle – The Church of England (York Province).

For all who have died: Carl, Elizabeth. 

For one another.

Something to share

If Eve Side-Stealer and Mary Busted-Chest Ruled the World

What if Eve was an Indian

& Adam was never kneaded

from the earth, Eve was Earth

& ribs were her idea all along?

What if Mary was an Indian

& when Gabriel visited her wigwam

she was away at a monthly WIC clinic

receiving eggs, boxed cheese

& peanut butter instead of Jesus?

What if God was an Indian

with turquoise wings & coral breasts

who invented a game called White Man Chess

played on silver boards with all white pieces

pawns & kings & only one side, the white side

& the more they won the more they were beaten?

What if the world was an Indian

whose head & back were flat from being strapped

to a cradleboard as a baby & when she slept

she had nightmares lit up by yellow-haired men & ships

scraping anchors in her throat? What if she wailed

all night while great waves rose up carrying the fleets

across her flat back, over the edge of the flat world?

      – Natalie Diaz

News and Updates

Sunday Eucharist Live stream – tomorrow morning —- Just  visit:  https://www.facebook.com/SaintStephensSchenectady/ at 9am on Sunday and wait for the live stream to be posted.

If you plan to attend in person tomorrow morning, June 6th at 9:00am, for the celebration of Holy Eucharist, to help you understand what to expect, please click on this link: 

The only exception is that we will begin limited singing.

And/or, tomorrow morning, join us for the celebration of Holy Eucharist live-streamed from the National Cathedral at 11:15am.  This is another way in which we can worship together albeit remotely. All you have to do is click on the link below, and it should take you to the service. https://youtu.be/zx_CIxnw-rA

Prayerbook Morning Prayer in Zoom – tomorrow morning.  Join our parishioners for an inter-active service of Morning Prayer at 8 am. Time to bring your prayer concerns will be provided. (contact Becky for the link:   becky.holder@gmail.com).

Tomorrow’s Readings: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1B-ihfZpasxpKGkF9gpi4sxeKeaa-FqBZ/view?usp=sharing

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 weekday & Saturday morning.  Join us 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 during the waning of the pandemic.  Please see our website for further information: https://st-stephens.church/. Most parish meetings and gatherings are canceled or postponed until at least this fall.

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

We continue to comply with all of these: the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html ; the NY  Department of Public Health https://www.health.ny.gov/ ; and the Diocese of Albany https://albanyepiscopaldiocese.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/cleaning_guidance_houses_of_worship.pdf.

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 during the waning of the pandemic.

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,

the rains fall soft upon soft upon your fields,

And until we meet again

May God hold you in the palm of God’s 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.