Staying Safe and Staying Connected
Good Morning Saint Stephen’s Church,
We continue our life of daily prayer. The Lord be with you!
The Canticle of the Sun
O Most High, almighty, good Lord God! All praise is yours, all glory, all honor, and all blessing. To you, alone, Most High, do they belong. No mortal lips are worthy to pronounce your name.
Praise to my Lord, with all his creatures: and specially our brother the Sun, who brings us the day and who brings us the light. Fair is he and shining with a very great splendor: O Lord, it is you that he signifies to us.
Praise to my Lord for our sister the Moon: and for the stars, which he has set clear and lovely in heaven.
Praise to my Lord for our brother the Wind: and for air and cloud, calms, and all weather, by which you uphold in life all creatures.
Praise to my Lord for our sister Water: who is very serviceable to us, and humble, and precious, and clean.
Praise to my Lord for our brother Fire, through whom you give us light in the darkness: he is bright and pleasant and very mighty and strong.
Praise to my Lord for our mother the Earth, which sustains and keeps us; and brings forth divers fruits, and flowers of many colors, and herbs, and grass.
Praise to my Lord for all those who pardon one another for his love’s sake: and who endure weakness and tribulation. Blessed are those who peaceably shall endure; for you, O Most Highest, shall give them a crown.
Praise to my Lord for our sister Bodily Death from whose embrace no living person is deprived: blessed are those she finds doing your most holy will.
Praise and bless the Lord and give thanks to him and serve him with great humility. Alleluia, alleluia.
– Francis of Assisi, 1226
The new merchant classes were growing rich and powerful. Francis of Assisi belonged to a wealthy family, but rejected his father’s cloth business to embrace Lady Poverty. So many sought to follow his example that he formed them into a community of Little Brothers or Friars Minor. He told them to ‘Preach the gospel at all times; and if you must, use words.’ His introduction of live animals into the Christmas nativity display was an attempt to show that Christ was born among the poor. His preaching to the birds was a protest at the unwillingness of the rich to listen to him. He retreated to Mount Verna in Tuscany to meditate, and so intense was his identification with the crucified Jesus that wounds or “stigmata” appeared on his hands, feet, and side.
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, and for all victims of violence and oppression.
For the Presidents of Russia and Ukraine, that wisdom and courage may prevail in the cause of peace.
For the people of Ukraine, the people of Russia, and for all who affected by violence and war;
For those who have taken up arms, whether aggressively or defensively, that a spirit of peace may reign in their hearts and in their lands.
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: Candace, Daryl, Joan, Charline, Ralph, Mary Ann, Joe, Jeanne, Theresa, Josh, Donald.
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 all the blessings of this life.
For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion: The Diocese of Krishna-Godavari – The (united) Church of South India.
For all who have died: Dorothy Rigley, Robert Malmros, Charles Morrison, and Julia Moss.
For one another.
Something to share
When it seemed there was no hope
you showed us new ways forward, O God.
When it seemed there were only endings
You showed us new beginnings.
Strengthen our belief in the power of life over death.
Strengthen our belief in the force of truth over falsehood
that we may be bearers of hope in the world,
that we may be bearers of hope.
– Philip Newell from “Celtic Treasures
News and Updates
Special Coffee Hour Brunch – The pandemic precluded the kind of celebration of Don Humphrey’s life that his wife, Marilyn wished at the time of his memorial service. On April 24th after the Eucharist we will have that opportunity with a brunch in honor of Don. Marilyn invites everyone to join in the celebration.
SiCM Pantry Requests for April and May – It’s time for Spring cleaning! The pantry is in desperate need of cleaning supplies for their guests. Basic items from discount retailers are always appreciated: bleach, glass cleaner, bathroom cleaners, and both laundry and dish detergents. Please donate only 16-ounce containers (or smaller) of the bleach and cleaners. If you can buy smaller containers of the detergents, that would also be appreciated; otherwise SiCM pours them into smaller bottles. Also, if you have small reusable plastic bottles, the pantry can use those! Consider also laundry detergent pods or strips instead of the liquid detergents.
Interfaith Seder – Today, April 7, 2022, beginning at 5:15pm. This Zoom Seder will have the theme “Historical Development of the Seder Through the Ages.” It will be participatory and traditional. Contact – Jack Mintzer, Congregation Agudat Achim 518-393-9211 – firstname.lastname@example.org for the link.
Street Soldiers – We will meet this Sunday (4/10) after the 9:30 service to make bagged lunches for street soldiers. Please consider bringing an individually wrapped snack to add to each bag (about 30 altogether – granola bars, chips, a piece of fruit, etc). All are welcome to help. Please meet us in the Parish Hall. Contact Bethany at email@example.com if you have any questions.
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.