Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Saturday, January 15, 2022

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, we are surrounded by so many disturbing things that sometimes we know not how to face them. Help us always to remember that when we need help, ask for help, are humble enough to receive help, help of one kind or another is always forthcoming. Thou, O God, art the helper of the helpless, and when we have the humility to recognize our helplessness, then in the help that we are given, we find the reassurance of thy presence. Amen.

          –  Theodore Parker Ferris, 1972

The Rev. Theodore Ferris was a seminary professor and ecumenist. He was ordained deacon and priest in the Episcopal Church. He was the fourteenth rector of Trinity Church, Boston, Massachusetts. Many of his publications were books of sermons. He published a book on preaching, Go Tell the People, in which he stated that “A sermon is by nature a disclosure, an unveiling, a revelation . . . to preach is to draw the curtain aside from the figure of Christ and to lose oneself in the folds of it.” Ferris was instructor in homiletics at the Episcopal Theological School, Cambridge, Massachusetts. He was active in the ecumenical movement and an alternate delegate to the first assembly of the World Council of Churches at Amsterdam in 1948. Ferris died in Boston. 

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 our allies around the world in harm’s way: especially for those who are Kazakhstan; may God be with them and their families.

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 vaccinations and tests, may God grant them wisdom and skill, sympathy and patience, and may God keep them healthy and safe.

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 recognize 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 Adrian, Andrew, Rosemary, Fritz, Regina, Joan,  Isabella, Gus, Pat, Katie, Mike, June, Kenny, Danny, Charlotte, Diana, Caleb, June, Ruth, David, Kathy Nick, Roberta, Beth, Walker, Susan, Ann, John, Stephen, Don, Ruth.

For our Government Leaders: Joseph Biden, President of the United States; Kathy Hochul, Governor of New York State; Gary McCarthy, Mayor of Schenectady.

For our Church Leaders: Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, Michael Curry, Presiding Bishop; Michael G. Smith and Carol Gallagher, Assisting 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: Charline, Janet, Marilyn, Don, Eunice, Ruth, Mary Frances, Vincent, Priscilla, Joe.

For all the blessings of this life.

For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion:  The Diocese of San Joaquin – The Episcopal Church (VIII (8) Province).

For all who have died:  Helen Oyer, Dave Stevens, and Richard Causey.

Something to share

The Proof

Shall I love God for causing me to be?

I was mere utterance; shall these words love me?

Yet when I caused his work to jar and stammer

And one free subject loosened all his grammar,

I love him that he did not in a rage

Once and forever rule me off the page,

But, thinking I might come to please him yet.

Crossed out delete and wrote his patient stet.

          –   Richard Wilbur

News and Updates 

Lessons for tomorrow:

Street Soldiers – We will be meeting this Sunday, January16 after the 9 am service to make bagged lunches for Street Soldiers in the Parish Hall.  All are welcome to come help. If you are able please consider bringing an individually packaged food item to put in the lunch bags (fruit, snack size chip bag, granola bar, etc.). 

Annual Meeting – Our annual meeting will be held on Sunday January 23, 2022 at 11:00am on Zoom.  Please mark your calendars and plan to attend.  If you have a report to include, please submit it to office@st-stephens.church by this coming Sunday, January 16.

SiCM Food Pantry – Thanks to everyone who donated stuffing mix and baking supplies to the SiCM food pantry during the months of November and December.  For January, we are going to reinstate collecting personal hygiene products, such as shampoo/conditioner, deodorant, toothpaste (please, no toothbrushes as the pantry has many of them), body wash, bar soap, etc., as well as feminine hygiene products (pads and tampons).  These items are always in high demand at the pantry.  Thank you for all your support!  – Linda Emaelaf

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. Sunday Morning Prayer is at 8:00am.Time to bring your prayer concerns will be provided.  (contact Becky for the link:   becky.holder@gmail.com).

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

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

Home Communions: If you or someone you know is unable to attend church on either a long or short‑term basis, please contact me (james.ross.mcd@gmail.com) if you would like to have communion brought to you. We will make visits on Sunday after our regular Eucharist at church.

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.

For All Gatherings at the Church – Every individual on site NEEDS to wear a mask, even if you have been vaccinated! The mask should conform to ASC standards (covering both nose and mouth, well fitted – not a bandana/gator/scarf).  Let’s work together to keep the few activities we have!

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.

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