Staying Safe and Staying Connected
Good Morning Saint Stephen’s Church,
We continue our life of daily prayer. The Lord be with you!
Alleluia. Christ is risen.
The Lord is risen indeed. Alleluia.
there is a temple, a shrine, a mosque, a church
where I kneel.
Prayer should bring us to an altar where no walls or names exist.
Is there not a region of love where the sovereignty is
where ecstasy gets poured into itself
where the wing is fully alive
but has no mind or
there is a temple, a shrine, a mosque,
that dissolve, that
– Rabia of Basra, 801 Islamic saint
This weekend is Eid al-Fitr, the Festival of Breaking the Fast. It is the conclusion of Ramadan for our Muslim sisters and brothers. Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, observed by Muslims worldwide as a month of fasting, prayer, reflection and community. It lasts 29 – 30 days, from one sighting of the crescent moon to the next.
Rabia is considered one of the most popular Islamic saints and a central figure in the Sufi tradition. She grew up in a part of ancient Mesopotamia that is now Iraq. Hers was not an easy life. She was born into poverty, sold into slavery, and suffered physical and sexual abuse. In her later years she devoted her life to meditation and prayer, and would often see visitors seeking guidance. Many miracles are attributed to her, and apparently she was offered large sums for curing people. Refusing a bag of gold, Rabia said, “Dear, if you leave that, flies will gather as if a horse just relieved himself, and I might slip in it while dancing.”
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: Maria V., Liz, Kathy, Maggie, Reena, Jim, Bruce, Chris, Audrey, June, Caleb, Josh T, Pat J., Daniel, Doris, Camellia, Beverly .
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: Mary Ann, David, Janet, Marilyn, Eunice, Ruth, Mary Frances, Vincent, Priscilla, Joe, and all their families.
For Stephen – today is his baptismal anniversary!
For all the blessings of this life.
For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion: The Diocese of Lango – The Church of the Province of Uganda.
For all who have died: Bruce Tatge, Sarah Wylie, Margaret Law, Nancy Burnham, Caroline Ottaviano, Jeanette Ackner, George Lauder, and Clinton Williams
For one another.
Something to share
The Peace of Wild Things
When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.
– Wendell Berry
News and Updates
The Funeral service for Bruce Tatge begins at 10:00am.
If you would like to attend the this service from home, just visit: https://www.facebook.com/SaintStephensSchenectady/ at 10am and wait for the live stream to be posted. If there are technical issues with the livestream so that it stops, please try re-entering. Do not wait for it to come back on. It may take a few minutes for the livestream to start again, so please be patient. The live video is automatically recorded, so it will be available for viewing later on in the day or week if you can’t be online at 10:00.
Lessons for Tomorrow:
The May Messenger:
Organ Concert today – featuring Joey Fala celebrating the centennial of the American Guild of Organists in Eastern NY. Mr. Fala earned a master’s degree in organ performance from Yale, after completing degrees in architecture and lighting at RPI. He was organ scholar at Duke University and is currently the director of music at University Presbyterian Church, Chapel Hill. He will play works by Franck, Alain, Bach, Howells, Hindemith, and will premiere a piece by Alfred V. Fedak written for the occasion.
The Eastern NY chapter was founded in September, 1920, and currently consists of over 100 organists, choir directors, and organ enthusiasts. The chapter has brought world class musicians to the area for concerts and workshops, and has fostered organists through mutual support and scholarships.
Eastern NY Chapter, American Guild of Organists
Centennial Celebration Concert
Saturday, April 30, 2022, 3:00 PM
St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, 107 State Street, Albany
Free will offering
Schenectady Community Ministries – Looking for a summer internship where you can make a positive impact on your community? Join the team at SiCM! SiCM is looking for interns ages 17+ to help out the Summer Meals program. Apply today! Visit sicm.us/what-we-do/summer-meals/ and download the application. Deadline is today or until positions are filled.
Confirmation – Bp. Michael Smith will hold a regional confirmation service at All Saints’ Cathedral on Saturday, May 14th at 10am. A group from St. Stephen’s will be confirmed and others will attend. If you are interested, perhaps transportation could be arranged. Please contact me, email@example.com.
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.