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.
Almighty God, who gave to your apostles Philip and James grace
and strength to bear witness to the truth: Grant that we, being
mindful of their victory of faith, may glorify in life and death the
Name of our Lord Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you
and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
– Book of Common Prayer, p.240
Today is the Feast of St. Philip and St. James (transferred from yesterday).
Have you ever tried really hard to make a good impression and say just the right thing, only to embarrass yourself? If you have, St Philip understands. One of the twelve apostles, Philip was present at the Last Supper. Jesus had just explained that he was going to prepare a place for his followers. Thomas interrupted, asking, “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?” Jesus answered, “I am the way . . . . If you knew me, you would know my Father also.”
We can almost see what is coming next. Thomas is still uncertain, so Philip tries to make things better by asking, “Lord, show us the Father and we will be satisfied.” In a likely state of frustration Jesus answers, “Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and you still do not know me?” Philip must have wanted to join Thomas under the cushions at the table.
There are several people in Jesus’ life named James. Today’s James is known as James the Less to distinguish him from James, the son of Zebedee and from James, “the brother of the Lord”. James the Less is known to us from the list of the Twelve, where he is called James the son of Alpheus. He may also be the person referred to in Mark’s Gospel as James the younger who, with his mother Mary and the other women, watched the crucifixion from a distance.
St. Philip is the patron saint of Cape Verde, hatters, pastry chefs, jockeys and riders of horses. St, James the Less is the patron of pharmacists, fullers, hatters, and the dying.
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: 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 all the blessings of this life.
For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion: The Diocese of West Lango – The Church of the Province of Uganda.
For all who have died: Anne Jenny, Katherine Huston, Richard Petter, Taylor Trawick, Alice Burrows, Shirley Tinney, Melanie Kidder
For one another.
Something to share
St. Philip And St. James
Let the brother of low degree rejoice in that he is exalted:
but the rich in that he is made low. St. James i. 9. 10.
Dear is the morning gale of spring,
And dear th’ autumnal eve;
But few delights can summer bring
A Poet’s crown to weave.
Her bowers are mute, her fountains dry,
And ever Fancy’s wing
Speed’s from beneath her cloudless sky
To autumn or to spring.
Sweet is the infant’s waking smile,
And sweet the old man’s rest-
But middle age by no fond wile,
No soothing calm is blest.
Still in the world’s hot restless gleam
She plies her weary task,
While vainly for some pleasant dream
Her wandering glances ask.-
O shame upon thee, listless heart,
So sad a sigh to heave,
As if thy SAVIOUR had no part
In thoughts, that make thee grieve.
As if along His lonesome way
He had not borne for thee
Sad languors through the summer day,
Storms on the wintry sea.
Youth’s lightning flash of joy secure
Passed seldom o’er His spright,-
A well of serious thought and pure.
Too deep for earthly light.
No spring was His-no fairy gleam-
For He by trial knew
How cold and bare what mortals dream,
To worlds where all is true.
Then grudge not thou the anguish keen
Which makes thee like thy LORD,
And learn to quit with eye serene
Thy youth’s ideal hoard.
Thy treasured hopes and raptures high-
Unmurmuring let them go,
Nor grieve the bliss should quickly fly
Which CHRIST disdained to know.
Thou shalt have joy in sadness soon;
The pure, calm hope be thine,
Which brightens, like the eastern moon,
As day’s wild lights decline.
Thus souls, by nature pitched too high,
By sufferings plunged too low,
Meet in the Church’s middle sky,
Half way ‘twixt joy and woe,
To practise there the soothing lay
That sorrow best relieves;
Thankful for all God takes away,
Humbled by all He glass.
– John Keble
News and Updates
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.
Organ Recital – On May 15th at 3pm the nationally known organist and composer, Alfred Fedak and his student, Susan Lohnas, will give an inaugural organ recital at St. Stephen’s. Come, support the music program at our church and hear our organ in its splendor!
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.