Staying Safe and Staying Connected
Good Morning Saint Stephen’s Church,
We continue our life of daily prayer. The Lord be with you!
Dear Lord, it seems that you are so madly in love with your creatures that you could not live without us. So you created us; and then, when we turned away from you, you redeemed us. Yet you are God, and so have no need of us. Your greatness is made no greater by our creation; your power is made no stronger by our redemption. You have no duty to care for us, no debt to repay us. It is love, and love alone, which moves you.
– Catherine of Siena, 1380
Catherine of Siena was the youngest of twenty-five children of a wealthy dyer. She joined a Dominican lay sisterhood when she was only sixteen. She had numerous visions and frequently felt abandoned by God. As a nurse she cared for patients that others disliked to treat – those with leprosy or cancer. Catherine was a courageous worker in time of severe plague; she visited prisoners condemned to death; she arbitrated feuds and prepared notorious sinners for confession.
During the great schism of the papacy, with rival popes in Rome and Avignon, Catherine wrote tirelessly to princes, kings, and popes, urging them to restore the unity of the Church. She even went to Rome to advocate for this cause.
From Our Prayers of the People
For the special needs and concerns of our congregation.
For people throughout the world: in places of war and strife, especially in the Ukraine, 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 and the Ukraine; 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: Liz, Kathy, Maggie, Reena, Jim, 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: Liz, Kathy, Janet, Marilyn, Eunice, Ruth, Mary Frances, Vincent, Priscilla, Joe, and all their families.
For Kathryn – today is her birthday!
For all the blessings of this life.
For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion The Diocese of Kimberley & Kuruman – The Anglican Church of Southern Africa.
For all who have died: Jane Hallock, Galina Bayer, Mabel Stewart, Julia Hillman, Edna Whitbeck, Vera Hughes.
Something to share
Consumed in Grace
I first saw God when I was a child, six years of age.
The cheeks of the sun were pale before Him,
and the earth acted as a shy
girl, like me.
Divine light, entered my heart from His love
that did never fully wane,
though indeed, dear, I can understand how a person’s
faith can at times flicker,
for what is the mind to do
with something that becomes the mind’s ruin:
a God that consumes us
in His grace.
I have seen what you want;
it is there,
a Beloved of infinite
– Catherine of Siena
News and Updates
Lessons for tomorrow:
Sunday Lector – If you would like to read the Sunday scripture lessons on a rotating basis, please contact Doreen May, email@example.com, so that she can put you on the schedule.
Coffee Hour Sign-up – If you would like to take a week for COFFEE HOUR for the coming weeks, please sign-up at https://docs.google.com/document/d/10ZXG2ODgQSDCqwUXnUHj_3Bsx053IfVL2Thk7IJvHvY/edit so that we can continue to enjoy fellowship after church uninterruptedly.
Schenectady Community Ministries (SiCM) – Thank you again for your continued support of the SiCM Rev. Phil Food Pantry. For the month of March we are collecting:
· snacks (granola bars, fruit snacks, snack-size pretzels, crackers & chips, etc.)
· Knorr food packets (pasta and rice sides, bouillon and food mixes).
In addition to having the pantry open four days a week, each week SiCM volunteers bring food to Schenectady residents eligible for food delivery. SiCM has recently begun distributing food at Martin Luther King School every other week when parents come to pick up their children, reaching families who cannot get to the pantry.
St. Joseph’s Place – On the last Wednesday morning of each month St. Stephen’s volunteers make lunches for the guests at St. Joseph’s Place. If you would like to participate, contact Carole or Richey. We welcome contributions toward the cost of the food and supplies, which you can put in the offering plate or mail to the church office.
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: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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: email@example.com).
If you need a prayerbook, and are not in a position to purchase one, please contact me: firstname.lastname@example.org. I will make sure you have your own Book of Common Prayer.
Masks are optional for all gatherings at the church.
Our office email is: email@example.com.
Our goal is for all of us to stay in touch and connected.
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.