Staying Safe and Staying Connected
Good Morning Saint Stephen’s Church,
We continue our life of daily prayer. The Lord be with you!
When the heart is hard and parched up, come upon me with a shower of mercy.
When grace is lost from life, come with a burst of song.
When tumultuous work raises its din on all sides, shutting me out from beyond, come to me, my lord of silence, with thy peace and rest.
When my beggarly hearts sits crouched, shut up in a corner, break open the door, my king, and come with the ceremony of a king.
When desire blinds the mind with delusion and dust, O thou holy one, thou wakeful one, come with thy light and thy thunder.
– Rabindranath Tagore, 1941
Rabindranath Tagore was a Bengali poet, writer, composer, philosopher and painter. This untitled piece is no. 39 from his collection Gitanjali (Song Offerings). Originally written and published in Bengali in 1910, it was translated into English by Tagore himself in 1912, along with other poems of his from various sources, and published by the India Society of London with an introduction by W. B. Yeats. For this volume he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature – the forst non-European to receive such a distinction.
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: for those who are still trying to leave Afghanistan; 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, 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: Reena Jim, Jane and Bruce, Chris Audrey, June, Caleb, Sunny, Josh T, Pat J.
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, and all their families.
For Carolyn: Today is her birthday!
For all the blessings of this life.
For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion: The Diocese of Kajo-Keji – The Province of the Episcopal Church of South Sudan (Cantral Equatoria Province).
For all who have died: Jane Tatge, Jesse Dipley and Gladys Wilcox.
Something to share
Let go of the place that holds,
Let go of the place that flinches,
Let go of the place that controls,
Let go of the place that fears.
Just let the ground support me.
Listen, the wind is breathing in the trees.
Sensing the edge of soft and hard,
I follow the unseen path.
Walking in the dark night,
I practice faith,
Building confidence in the unknown.
Walking in the dark night,
I practice courage,
accepting the vastness
of what I cannot see.
– Stephanie Kaza
News and Updates
A Eucharist of the Resurrection for Jane Tatge will be held this Saturday, January 29 at 11:00 am at Saint Stephen’s Church.
Free Covid-19 Test Kits – the federal government is making free covid-19 test kits available for each household (4 total). You can make the request at www.covidtests.gov. Anyone who may have more test kits than they need can donate them to SiCM. They will be distributed to those SiCM serves.
Street Soldiers – We will be meeting next Sunday to make bagged lunches in the Parish Hall directly following the 9 am service. All are welcome to help – either by bringing an individually wrapped snack, drink, or dessert to put in the bags, or by helping make the sandwiches and packing bags, or both! Feel free to contact Bethany with any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org
SiCM Donations – Thank you very much for the donations of personal care items to the food pantry during January. Because their guests frequently ask for them, SiCM has requested that we continue donating these items next month. In particular, the pantry needs soap and body wash, deodorant, lotion and men’s disposable razors, as well as toilet paper and paper towels, which are often hard to keep in stock at the pantry. SiCM can also use 1-lb. boxes of sugar and Splenda, which are in addition to the grocery bags they hand out.
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: email@example.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: firstname.lastname@example.org).
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 next year.
Our office email is: email@example.com.
Home Communions: If you or someone you know is unable to attend church on either a long or short‑term basis, please contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you would like to have communion brought to you. We will make visits on Sunday after our regular Eucharist at church and always wear a mask.
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!
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.