Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Monday, July 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

Thank you, Lord. You are the light that never goes out. You are the eye that never closes. You are the ear that is never shut. You are the mind that never gives up. You are the heart that never grows cold. You are the hand that never stops reaching. Thank you, Lord. And let us be receptive to you. Amen.

–  Ronald J .Allen and Linda McKiernan-Allen

Ronald J. Allen, now retired, is an ordained Disciples of Christ minister who taught preaching at Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis for thirty-seven years. He is the author of a number of books on preaching. Linda McKiernan-Allen is also an ordained Disciples of Christ minister who most recently served a church in Tipton, Indiana, for over a decade. Ronald and Linda, who are married, have five adult children together. This prayer was originally included in the 1997 version of Chalice Worship, a service book for Disciples of Christ congregations, and was reprinted in God’s Good Earth: Praise and Prayers for Creation, compiled by Anne and Jeffery 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 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:  Robert, Heather, Jackson, Michael, Mary, Bill, Mary Frances, Jim, Eunice, Jane and Bruce, John, Audrey, Melanie, Joe, Rebecca .

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:   Dennie, Eunice, Vincent, Priscilla, Ruth, Mary Frances, Debbie, Joe.

For Madeleine – today is her birthday!

For all the blessings of this life.

 For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion:  The Diocese of Connor – The Church of Ireland (Armagh Province).

For all who have died:  Cindi, Elsie, Louise, Ada, Dorothy, Agnes. 

For one another.

Something to share

Brian Age Seven

Grateful for their tour

of the pharmacy,

the first-grade class

has drawn these pictures,

each self-portrait taped

to the window-glass,

faces wide to the street,

round and available,

with parallel lines for hair.

I like this one best: Brian,

whose attenuated name

fills a quarter of the frame,

stretched beside impossible

legs descending from the ball

of his torso, two long arms

springing from that same

central sphere. He breathes here,

on his page. It isn’t craft

that makes this figure come alive;

Brian draws just balls and lines,

in wobbly crayon strokes.

Why do some marks

seem to thrill with life,

possess a portion

of the nervous energy

in their maker’s hand?

That big curve of a smile

reaches nearly to the rim

of his face; he holds

a towering ice cream,

brown spheres teetering

on their cone,

a soda fountain gift

half the length of him

—as if it were the flag

of his own country held high

by the unadorned black line

of his arm. Such naked support

for so much delight! Artless boy,

he’s found a system of beauty:

he shows us pleasure

and what pleasure resists.

The ice cream is delicious.

He’s frail beside his relentless standard.

    – Mark Doty

News and Updates

SiCM Food Pantry – During the months of July and August we will be collecting the following items that are needed by the SiCM food pantry:

razors (men/women)

shaving cream

shampoo

body wash

soap

toothpaste

lotion

deodorant (men/women)

Also, the van delivering the meals at St. Stephen’s for SiCM Summer Lunch Program will have kids’ books to give to the kids to take home.  There is a basket in the nave extension if you would like to contribute kids’ books (picture books up through high school).  Vicki Hoshko tells us that The Open Door is also giving customers 20% off  books donated to the SICM summer program. There is even a display with suggestions!

There are baskets in the nave extension for your donations. 

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 Daily 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 Holder for the link:   becky.holder@gmail.com).

Our church campus is only partially open during the waning of the pandemic.  Please see our website for further information: https://st-stephens.church/. Hopefully, most parish meetings and gatherings will resume 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.

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.