November 26, 2023
Altar Guild: J. Stefanski, T. Bennett
Ushers: D. Crates, V. Hoshko
Lector: J. Palko Intercessor: D. Crates
Closing: J. Brady-Close
Assisting: A. de Kanel, G. Woodzell
Coffee Hour: S. Lohnas, D. May
The Altar Flowers are given to the Glory of God and in loving memory of Samantha Valentine Humphrey by Marilyn Humphrey and Family.
The hymn Crown Him With Many Crowns (#494) makes a simple yet profound declaration that Christ is Lord of all, to be crowned for many things that add up to Him being Savior of the world. Each crown represents a different aspect of who Christ is Lord of life, Lord of love, Lord of years, Lord of heaven, the Lamb upon the throne. Christ is King, Servant, Lamb, Shepherd, and we celebrate this all-encompassing, paradoxical nature of our Savior by crowning Him the Lord of all.
Taking the Next Faithful Step: Our stewardship season concludes today, Christ the King Sunday, although pledges are welcome at any time. We will dedicate pledges received for support in 2024 today and we welcome a reflection from George Woodzell.
Debbie O’Connor reflects:
Recently I was asked to share with you the reason(s) why I give my time, talent and treasure to St. Stephen’s. I would like to begin answering that question by saying God has blessed me with many gifts for which I am very grateful. Sending me to St. Stephen’s where I have found a community rich in faith as well as love and respect for one another is one of my loveliest gifts. I give thanks to God for what He has given me by sharing my time, talent and treasure with His people at St. Stephen’s so that together we may continue building on our strong foundation.
TODAY: Healing prayers will be offered in the library immediately after the Postlude. Sr. Warden Erin Cohen is organizing care packages for our college and university students. Please bring small items that college students will appreciate as they are working on final exams and papers. You can also write notes of encouragement to Abby, Ashleigh, Nora, and Vera. We may be including two additional students. We will be baking cookies today and shipping out the packages on Monday.
Saturday, 12/2, 10 a.m. — noon, Quiet Morning – Advent: A Season of Waiting. What are you waiting for this Advent? Who are you waiting for? Our morning retreat will reflect on this theme with meditative prayers interspersed with solitude. Questions? Contact Mtr. Dennie Bennett (email@example.com) or Allison de Kanel (firstname.lastname@example.org). There is a sign-up sheet in the narthex.
IMPORTANT NOTICE ABOUT BUILDING SECURITY: In order to ensure the safety of our worshipping community and responding to expressed concerns, the Vestry voted at its meeting on 11/13 to have only the main church door and the door to the parking lot open on Sundays. We are beginning this new policy on 12/3, the first Sunday in Advent. An usher will lock the parking lot door at 9:45 a.m., leaving only the main door to the church open. A sign with the church phone (518) 346-6241 will be posted, in the event you arrive late and need help entering.
Winter Clothes for City Mission: Thank you for all the donations of clothing! We delivered them to the City Mission. If you still have clothes to donate, we will deliver whatever else we collect in a couple of weeks.
SiCM Pantry – Please contribute pet food during the month of December.
Coffee Hour: There is a new sign-up sheet in the back of the church for the next several weeks of Coffee Hours. Please take a minute to sign up to host on a Sunday. If you have never done it before, there are easy-to-follow instructions, and either Linda or Carole would be happy to “show you the ropes.” I think we will all agree that the fellowship provided by Coffee Hour is an important part of our parish community.
Parish Directory: Please be in touch with Vicki Hoshko (email@example.com) if you have updates or were inadvertently omitted from either the photos or information section.
On Wednesday, December 13, 2023 the Dining for Dollars committee is sponsoring the 18th annual Dining for Dollars fundraiser. This year we are supporting: The MoonCatcher Project,providing menstrual management kits to girls living in poverty throughout the world, to help them stay in school, and Schenectady Street Soldiers, supporting those experiencing homelessness and food insecurity.
Visit https://www.mooncatcher.org/diningfordollars to find out about Dining for Dollars and to order a lasagna dinner. Order by 6 p.m. on December 8th. Questions? 518-859-5114 / MoonCatcherProject@gmail.com.
St. Stephen’s seeks Office Manager, part-time 15-hour/week position. For info or application: Mtr. Jane or Linda Emaelaf.
VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES: We have need for vestry members, ushers/greeters, hospitality hosts for coffee hour and special events, buildings and grounds maintenance, communications (to help with Facebook and social media and redesign/maintenance of our web site), office assistance with mailings, acolytes, and people to secure the building at the end of services. Please pray about whether you can extend and deepen your involvement in the life and witness of our parish. All of our committees/ministries welcome new members, as does our choir. For information, please speak with Mtr. Jane or one of our wardens. If you are interested in singing with the choir, please speak with Doug Lohnas.
Wednesday, 11/29, lunch-making at St. Joseph’s Place, 837 Albany Street, 8:45 am.
Thursday, 11/30, 7 p.m., Choir Rehearsal
Saturday, 12/9, 9 a.m.—4 p.m.; Diocese of Albany’s Inspired Leadership Conference at Christ the King Center, Greenwich [Pre-registration required.}
Saturday, 12/2, 10 a.m. to noon, Quiet Morning – Advent: A Season of Waiting.
Sunday, 12/3, A Conversation about Music in Advent. Susan and Doug Lohnas give an overview of how they select music for our services and reflect on the wonderful resources we have for music in Advent. Grab a beverage and snack after our 9:30 a.m. service and then join us back in the sanctuary.
Sunday, 12/10, Commemoration of the 75th Anniversary of the Declaration of Human Rights and letter-writing campaign (organized by Amnesty International). Grab a snack and beverage after our 9:30 a.m. service and join us in the vestry room.
Tuesday, 12/12, 1 p.m., Book Club. Read any biography or memoir and don’t tell us who you read about! Just write a paragraph so we can guess who the book is about. If you just wanted to join us this one time because you have read about an interesting person, please feel free to come. Info: Vicki Hoshko.
Wednesday, 12/20, 7 p.m., Blue Christmas Service
Sunday, 12/24, 4:30 p.m. (carols beginning at 4:15 p.m.) and 7:30 p.m. (carols beginning at 7:15 p.m.) Christmas Eve Services. (Please note change in times from those originally announced.)
Monday, 12/25, 9:30 a.m. Christmas Day Service
CAROL SING: We thank Richey Woodzell for organizing a carol sing for members and friends of the parish
at Sunnyview Rehabilitation Hospital. There will be a sign-up sheet in the narthex. We are trying to decide whether to schedule our caroling on Saturday, 12/9, or 12/16, 3 p.m. Please indicate your availability; she will choose a date based on numbers. Also indicate whether you would be like to join afterwards in Begley Hall for a pot-luck supper (optional).
✠ Christ the King ✠
The Last Sunday after PentecostCollect and Lessons for Proper 29, Year A
Almighty and everlasting God, whose will it is to restore all things in your well-beloved Son, the King of kings and Lord of lords: Mercifully grant that the peoples of the earth, divided and enslaved by sin, may be freed and brought together under his most gracious rule; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Ezekiel 34:11-16, 20-24
Thus says the Lord God: I myself will search for my sheep, and will seek them out. As shepherds seek out their flocks when they are among their scattered sheep, so I will seek out my sheep. I will rescue them from all the places to which they have been scattered on a day of clouds and thick darkness. I will bring them out from the peoples and gather them from the countries, and will bring them into their own land; and I will feed them on the mountains of Israel, by the watercourses, and in all the inhabited parts of the land. I will feed them with good pasture, and the mountain heights of Israel shall be their pasture; there they shall lie down in good grazing land, and they shall feed on rich pasture on the mountains of Israel. I myself will be the shepherd of my sheep, and I will make them lie down, says the Lord God. I will seek the lost, and I will bring back the strayed, and I will bind up the injured, and I will strengthen the weak, but the fat and the strong I will destroy. I will feed them with justice.
Therefore, thus says the Lord God to them: I myself will judge between the fat sheep and the lean sheep. Because you pushed with flank and shoulder, and butted at all the weak animals with your horns until you scattered them far and wide, I will save my flock, and they shall no longer be ravaged; and I will judge between sheep and sheep.
I will set up over them one shepherd, my servant David, and he shall feed them: he shall feed them and be their shepherd. And I, the Lord, will be their God, and my servant David shall be prince among them; I, the Lord, have spoken.
1 Come, let us sing to the Lord; *
let us shout for joy to the Rock of our salvation.
2 Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving *
and raise a loud shout to him with psalms.
3 For the Lord is a great God, *
and a great King above all gods.
4 In his hand are the caverns of the earth, *
and the heights of the hills are his also.
5 The sea is his, for he made it, *
and his hands have molded the dry land.
6 Come, let us bow down, and bend the knee, *
and kneel before the Lord our Maker.
7 For he is our God,
and we are the people of his pasture and the sheep of his hand.
I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, and for this reason I do not cease to give thanks for you as I remember you in my prayers. I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as you come to know him, so that, with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe, according to the working of his great power. God put this power to work in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the age to come. And he has put all things under his feet and has made him the head over all things for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.
Jesus said, “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on the throne of his glory. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, and he will put the sheep at his right hand and the goats at the left. Then the king will say to those at his right hand, ‘Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?’ And the king will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.’ Then he will say to those at his left hand, ‘You that are accursed, depart from me into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels; for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not give me clothing, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’ Then they also will answer, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not take care of you?’ Then he will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’ And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”
Weekly Email Updates
Church office at 1229 Baker Ave, Schenectady, NY 12309
Church address: 1935 The Plaza, Schenectady, NY 12309
Office phone: 518-346-6241; Office email: Office@St-Stephens.church
At this time we have an in-person 9:30 a.m. Sunday morning service. This service is also live streamed on our Facebook page most Sundays.
Online worship services – Washington Cathedral (cathedral.org)
We also offer Morning Prayer via zoom, Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.; Saturday, 8:30 a.m.; Sunday, 8 a.m. Contact the Parish Office for the link.
Our mission is to glorify God by reaching out to others, universally, with hands that serve, hearts and minds that welcome, and voices that carry the good news of God’s redeeming love to all. We embrace diversity by celebrating the worth, dignity, and gifts of every person as a child of God. We seek to expand our Christian community and share God’s love more widely.
All are welcome!
Come and see!