Staying Safe and Staying Connected
Good Morning, Saint Stephen’s Church,
Almighty God, by whose providence your servant John the Baptist was wonderfully born, and sent to prepare the way of your Son our Savior by preaching repentance: Make us so to follow his teaching and holy life, that we may truly repent according to his preaching; and, following his example, constantly speak the truth, boldly rebuke vice, and patiently suffer for the truth’s sake; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
– Book of Common Prayer, p. 241
Today is the Nativity of St. John the Baptist.
John the Baptist was a Jewish itinerant preacher in the early 1st century AD. He is mentioned by the Hebrew historian Josephus and revered as a major religious figure in Christianity, Islam, and the Baha’I Faith. John is considered a prophet by these faiths and he is considered a saint in many Christian traditions. According to the New Testament, John anticipated a messianic figure greater than himself, and the Gospels portray John as the forerunner of Jesus. He announces Jesus’ coming and prepares the people for Jesus’ ministry. In the Gospel of Luke, John the Baptist and Jesus are cousins, whose births are six months apart.
John the Baptist is the patron saint of many different subjects, including builders, tailors, printers, conversion to faith, and people dealing with storms and their effects (like hail). He also serves as the patron saint of a variety of places throughout the world, such as Puerto Rico, Jordan, Quebec (Canada), Charleston (South Carolina), and Cornwall (England).
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: Myra, Candace, Daryl, Joan, Charline, Ralph, Mary Ann, Joe, Jeanne, Theresa, Josh, Donald, Judith, David
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, 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 Malaita – The Anglican Church of Melanesia.
For all who have died: Paul Tanner, Lila Wood, Hugh Campbell, Jr., Tom Chouffi, Louis Hibbs, and Michael Cotton.
For one another.
Something to share
I am too loud when you are gone
I am too loud when you are gone
I am John the Baptist, cheated by mere water
and merciful love, wild but over-known
John of honey, of time, longing not for
music, longing, longing to be Him
I am diminished, I peddle versions of Word
that don’t survive the tablets broken stone
I am alone when you are gone.
– Leonard Cohen
News and Updates
New Ushers Needed – We are looking for new ushers to help us on Sunday mornings. If you are interested please see Vicki Hoshko or Allison de Kanel for more information.
SiCM Summer Meals Update
St. Stephen’s will be doing the summer meals at Central Park June 29-July 1 and July 5-8.
• We will need at least 4 volunteers per day, and it would be good to have a list of substitutes.
• Time commitment: 12:45 (at the latest) to 2:30
• All volunteers must complete a training session and sign a volunteer training form. A training video will be available on the SiCM website this week. The form can be downloaded from the SiCM site; there will also be copies in the nave extension. Get them back to Richey or bring when you come to Central Park.
• Duties: Greet truck and unload supplies, hand out meals, keep count, interact with /provide activities for kids, clean up site.
Thank you to those who have signed up! We need some more volunteers for July 1, 5 and 6. Please contact Richey Woodzell at firstname.lastname@example.org or 518-852-6796 for any days you’re willing to volunteer or serve as a sub.
Coffee Hour – Volunteers are needed to sign up for coffee hour. Please visit the homepage of our website to choose an available date from now through the end of summer. Thanks!
SiCM Pantry- Thank you for your donations of cleaning supplies! For June we are collecting spices and seasonings, which are not usually stocked by the pantry. Please see a full list of spices needed in the nave extension, near where you put your contributions.
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 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: firstname.lastname@example.org).
If you need a prayerbook, and are not in a position to purchase one, please contact me: email@example.com. I will make sure you have your own Book of Common Prayer.
Our office email is: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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.