Saint Stephen’s Episcopal Church 

Saint Stephen’s Weekly Prayers for the week of  August 7, 2022

Good Morning, Saint Stephen’s Church,

From Our Prayers of the People 

Anglican Cycle of Prayer: The Church in the Province of the West Indies

Our Leaders: Joseph Biden, President of the United States; Kathy Hochul, Governor of New York State; Gary McCarthy, Mayor of Schenectady

Our Church Leaders: Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury; Michael Curry, Presiding Bishop; Michael G. Smith and Carol Gallagher, Assisting Bishops; and Allison de Kanel, our lay reader

Those who are in need of strength and healing: Mary Ann Harrington, David Humphrey, Marilyn Causey, Eunice Chouffi, Mary Frances Hatfield, Vincent Avila, Priscilla Sprague, June Russell, and Joe White

Those who celebrate birthdays this week:   Suzanne Taylor, Frankie Ruscitto, and Timothy Grimason

Those who celebrate baptismal anniversaries this week: Kiely Olsen 

Those who celebrate wedding anniversaries this week:  Sherry and Brian Springstead 

Those who have died:  Robert McCalley, Cynthia Wickes, Justin Northrop, Scott Moss, and Julie Paulus McDonald

This Week’s Lessons

COLLECT

Grant to us, Lord, we pray, the spirit to think and do always

those things that are right, that we, who cannot exist without you, may by you be enabled to live according to your will; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

FIRST LESSON

Genesis 15:1-6

After these things the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision, “Do not be afraid, Abram, I am your shield; your reward shall be very great.”  But Abram said, “O Lord GOD, what will you give me, for I continue childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?” And Abram said, “You have given me no offspring, and so a slave born in my house is to be my heir.” But the word of the LORD came to him, “This man shall not be your heir; no one but your very own issue shall be your heir.” He brought him outside and said, “Look toward heaven and count the stars, if you are able to count them.” Then he said to him, “So shall your descendants be.” And he believed the LORD; and the LORD reckoned it to him as righteousness.

PSALM 33:12-22

12  Happy is the nation whose God is the LORD! *

      happy the people he has chosen to be his own!

13  The LORD looks down from heaven, *

      and beholds all the people in the world.

14  From where he sits enthroned he turns his gaze

      on all who dwell on the earth.

15  He fashions all the hearts of them *

      and understands all their works.

16  There is no king that can be saved by a mighty army;

      a strong man is not delivered by his great strength.

17  The horse is a vain hope for deliverance; *

      for all its strength it cannot save.

18  Behold, the eye of the LORD is upon those who fear him, *

      on those who wait upon his love,

19  To pluck their lives from death, *

       and to feed them in time of famine.

20  Our soul waits for the LORD; *

      he is our help and our shield.

21  Indeed, our heart rejoices in him, *

      for in his holy Name we put our trust.

22  Let your loving-kindness, O LORD, be upon us, *

      as we have put our trust in you.

SECOND LESSON

Hebrews 11:1-3, 8-16

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. Indeed, by faith our ancestors received approval. By faith we understand that the worlds were prepared by the word of God, so that what is seen was made from things that are not visible. By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to set out for a place that he was to receive as an inheritance; and he set out, not knowing where he was going. By faith he stayed for a time in the land he had been promised, as in a foreign land, living in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. For he looked forward to the city that has foundations, whose architect and builder is God. By faith he received power of procreation, even though he was too old–and Sarah herself was barren–because he considered him faithful who had promised.

Therefore from one person, and this one as good as dead,

descendants were born, “as many as the stars of heaven and as the innumerable grains of sand by the seashore.” All of these died in faith without having received the promises, but from a distance they saw and greeted them. They confessed that they were strangers and foreigners on the earth, for people who speak in this way make it clear that they are seeking a homeland. If they had been thinking of the land that they had left behind, they would have had opportunity to return. But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God; indeed, he has prepared a city for them.

GOSPEL

Luke 12:32-40

Jesus said to his disciples, “Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. Sell your possessions, and give alms. Make purses for yourselves that do not wear out, an unfailing treasure in heaven, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

“Be dressed for action and have your lamps lit; be like those who are waiting for their master to return from the wedding banquet, so that they may open the door for him as soon as he comes and knocks. Blessed are those slaves whom the master finds alert when he comes; truly I tell you, he will fasten his belt and have them sit down to eat, and he will come and serve them. If he comes during the middle of the night, or near dawn, and finds them so, blessed are those slaves

“But know this: if the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an unexpected hour.”

News and Updates 

Music Today

Prelude                                                Prayer                                 Franck

Opening Hymn                                   #636

Sequence Hymn                                 #393

Offertory                                            Trio in C                              Sorge

Closing Hymn                                    #68

Postlude                                             Solenne                                Roulers/Rossini

Lectors: Reader one: Linda Emaelaf,  Reader two: Millie Gittinger

Ushers: Sal and Diana Belardo

Today we welcome Father Marshall Vang as our clergy.

Foyer Group will be starting up again soon.  Looking for a chairperson. Please reach out to Carole Merril–Mazurek if you would like more information or to volunteer as chair. 

Email list –If you do not currently receive our weekly emails and church updates please email the church office so we can add you (office@st-stephens.church).

The search committee has started their work in preparing to find St. Stephens’ next Rector.  As mentioned last week, the Vestry has met with Mother Elizabeth to go over the diocese’s guidelines on our transition.  The Search committee, who is assisting the Vestry, has started developing a Parish Survey and a Parish Profile.  In the coming weeks, you can expect two things. First, if you run a program at the Church, you will be asked to describe it for the Parish profile.  If you do not hear from me, reach out as you might have been left off the list and all programs we have are important.  Second, the Parish survey will be distributed digitally and paper copies will be available at the church.  We will be using the Daily Email List to distribute them, so if you are not on that list and want to receive it through email, let me know.  Your search committee is excited about moving St.Stephens into its next chapter.  If you have any questions, reach out to Dan Schuldt (daniel.schuldt@gmail.com)

Need a name lanyard? – With new supply priests in and out it would be helpful to consider wearing our name tags / lanyards again.  If you do not have one, please contact Bethany or email her at office@st-stephens.church.

Coffee Hour – Please consider signing up to either make coffee or clean up after coffee hour on the homepage of our website. The rest of the summer is open. Bring a snack to share whenever you can and are willing.

SiCM pantry donations-  We are collecting personal care items this month:  razors, shaving cream, shampoo, bodywash, soap, toothpaste, lotion, deodorant and toilet paper.  Donations of spices and 8-oz reusable bottles (with lids) are always welcome.

The minutes before and after worship are reserved for meditation and prayerful reflection accompanied by the organ prelude and postlude.  We are delighted that our bonds with each other are renewed and strengthened when we come together on Sunday, but we ask that conversation be reserved for spaces outside the Church before and after the Eucharist.  Thank you.

Supply Priest Update-

 8/14 – Father Marshall Vang

8/21 – Father Marshall Vang 

8/28 –  Mother Sally Heiligman

Pictures for Father James’ Retirement Party – https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1ofxQea5pQAUMU8AXNZoFCrGni_i28tn9?usp=sharing

Reminders

Prayerbook Morning Prayer in Zoom – each morning – contact Becky Holder for the link:   becky.holder@gmail.com.

Our office email is: office@st-stephens.church.

Irish Blessing

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.

Saint Stephen’s Episcopal Church 

Saint Stephen’s Weekly Prayers for the week of  July 31, 2022

Good Morning, Saint Stephen’s Church,

From Our Prayers of the People 

Anglican Cycle of Prayer:  the Church of the Province of West Africa

Our Leaders: Joseph Biden, President of the United States; Kathy Hochul, Governor of New York State; Gary McCarthy, Mayor of Schenectady

Our Church Leaders: Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury; Michael Curry, Presiding Bishop; Michael G. Smith and Carol Gallagher, Assisting Bishops; and Allison de Kanel, our lay reader

Those who are in need of strength and healing: Mary Ann Harrington, David Humphrey, Marilyn Causey, Eunice Chouffi, Mary Frances Hatfield, Vincent Avila, Priscilla Sprague, June Russell, and Joe White

Those who celebrate birthdays this week:  Edwin Masambo

Those who have died: Rose Altvalter, Margaret Bissonette, Mary Daly, Gloria Lukas, Anita McCalley, Elizabeth Thomas, Joanne Molino, Joseph Carroll,  Donald Cornell, William Tregurtha, Peter Ten Eyck Nevius

This Week’s Lessons

COLLECT

Let your continual mercy, O Lord, cleanse and defend your

Church; and, because it cannot continue in safety without

your help, protect and govern it always by your goodness;

through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you

and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

FIRST LESSON

Ecclesiastes 1:2, 12-14; 2:18-23

Vanity of vanities, says the Teacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity.

I, the Teacher, when king over Israel in Jerusalem, applied my mind to seek and to search out by wisdom all that is done under heaven; it is an unhappy business that God has given to human beings to be busy with. I saw all the deeds that are done under the sun; and see, all is vanity and a chasing after wind.

I hated all my toil in which I had toiled under the sun, seeing that I must leave it to those who come after me — and who knows whether they will be wise or foolish? Yet they will be master of all for which I toiled and used my wisdom under the sun. This also is vanity. So I turned and gave my heart up to despair concerning all the toil of my labors under the sun, because sometimes one who has toiled with wisdom and knowledge and skill must leave all to be enjoyed by another who did not toil for it. This also is vanity and a great evil. What do mortals get from all the toil and strain with which they toil under the sun? For all their days are full of pain, and their work is a vexation; even at night their minds do not rest. This also is vanity.

PSALM 49:1-11

1 Hear this, all you peoples;
hearken, all you who dwell in the world, *
you of high degree and low, rich and poor together.

2 My mouth shall speak of wisdom, *
and my heart shall meditate on understanding.

3 I will incline my ear to a proverb *
and set forth my riddle upon the harp.

4 Why should I be afraid in evil days, *
when the wickedness of those at my heels surrounds me,

5 The wickedness of those who put their trust in their goods, *
and boast of their great riches?

6 We can never ransom ourselves, *
or deliver to God the price of our life;

7 For the ransom of our life is so great, *
that we should never have enough to pay it,

8 In order to live for ever and ever, *
and never see the grave.

9 For we see that the wise die also;
like the dull and stupid they perish *
and leave their wealth to those who come after them.

10 Their graves shall be their homes for ever,
their dwelling places from generation to generation, *
though they call the lands after their own names.

11 Even though honored, they cannot live for ever; *
they are like the beasts that perish.

SECOND LESSON

Colossians 3:1-11

So if you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth, for you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life is revealed, then you also will be revealed with him in glory. Put to death, therefore, whatever in you is earthly: fornication, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed (which is idolatry). On account of these the wrath of God is coming on those who are disobedient. These are the ways you also once followed, when you were living that life. But now you must get rid of all such things–anger, wrath, malice, slander, and abusive language from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have stripped off the old self with its practices and have clothed yourselves with the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge according to the image of its creator. In that renewal there is no longer Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave and free; but Christ is all and in all.

GOSPEL

Luke 12:13-21

Someone in the crowd said to Jesus, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the family inheritance with me.” But he said to him, “Friend, who set me to be a judge or arbitrator over you?” And he said to them, “Take care! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of possessions.” Then he told them a parable: “The land of a rich man produced abundantly. And he thought to himself, ‘What should I do, for I have no place to store my crops?’ Then he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. And I will say to my soul, ‘Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.’ But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life is being demanded of you. And the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’ So it is with those who store up treasures for themselves but are not rich toward God.”

News and Updates 

Music Today

Prelude                                                Largo                                              Handel

Opening Hymn                                 #408

Sequence Hymn                               #435

Offertory                                          Kamennoi-Ostrow                           Rubinstein

Closing Hymn                                  #594

Postlude                                           Prelude and Fugue                          Bach

Lectors

Reader one: Carole Merrill-Mazurek     Reader two: Budd Mazurek

Today we welcome Mother Sally Heiligman as our clergy.

Messenger Updates – If you have anything to add to the August messenger please email the office (office@st-stephens.church) with your information by August 1!

The search committee has started their work in preparing to find St. Stephens’ next Rector.  As mentioned last week, the Vestry has met with Mother Elizabeth to go over the diocese’s guidelines on our transition.  The Search committee, who is assisting the Vestry, has started developing a Parish Survey and a Parish Profile.  In the coming weeks, you can expect two things. First, if you run a program at the Church, you will be asked to describe it for the Parish profile.  If you do not hear from me, reach out as you might have been left off the list and all programs we have are important.  Second, the Parish survey will be distributed digitally and paper copies will be available at the church.  We will be using the Daily Email List to distribute them, so if you are not on that list and want to receive it through email, let me know.  Your search committee is excited about moving St.Stephens into its next chapter.  If you have any questions, reach out to Dan Schuldt (daniel.schuldt@gmail.com).

Email list –If you do not currently receive our weekly emails and church updates please email the church office so we can add you.

From the Senior Warden –The Vestry met with Mother Elizabeth on July 10th to discuss the procedure for conducting a search for a new Rector; the Search Committee has begun work on developing and updating St. Stephen’s profile, as well as developing a parish survey; we will keep you informed on our progress. We have also begun a search for an Interim Rector, with the assistance of the Diocese; in addition, I am currently working on solidifying the Supply Priest roster for the Fall.

It is important during this transition period that all members of the Parish look for ways to contribute by becoming members of the committees and teams that are hard at work each week. I know that for some, giving of your time is difficult due to a number of reasons, but I urge you to think about it. We will be conducting a Parish Fair in September where the committees/Teams will have sign up sheets for those interested in participating. The one thing I have learned during my two years as Senior Warden is that many of us receive meaningful benefits from being part of this church family but give little back in return; I know because I am one who has been on the receiving end but gave little back – Budd Mazurek

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. 

Interested in Live-Streaming – See Dan Schuldt after any service for a quick overview of how to live-stream our services.  Only requires a smartphone and a few minutes of time!

Coffee Hour – We have decided to change the format of volunteering for Coffee Hour. We will now have one person sign up to make coffee, and another to clean up after coffee hour.  We ask that if possible, parishioners bring a single item / snack to share whenever they are able (i.e. a bag of chips, crackers & cheese, fruit, a baked item, etc.). This will help split take the work of each coffee hour amongst multiple people / families and hopefully make the work easier for everyone. Sign up is on the homepage of our website.

SiCM pantry donations-  We are collecting personal care items this month:  razors, shaving cream, shampoo, bodywash, soap, toothpaste, lotion, deodorant and toilet paper.  Donations of spices and 8-oz reusable bottles (with lids) are always welcome.

Supply Priest Update-  

8/7 –  Father Marshall Vang 8/21 – Father Marshall Vang 

8/14 – Father Marshall Vang 8/28 –  Mother Sally Heiligman

The minutes before and after worship are reserved for meditation and prayerful reflection accompanied by the organ prelude and postlude.  We are delighted that our bonds with each other are renewed and strengthened when we come together on Sunday, but we ask that conversation be reserved for spaces outside the Church before and after the Eucharist.  Thank you.

Reminders

Prayerbook Morning Prayer in Zoom – each morning – contact Becky Holder for the link:   becky.holder@gmail.com.

Our office email is: office@st-stephens.church.

Irish Blessing

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.

Saint Stephen’s Episcopal Church 

Saint Stephen’s Weekly Prayers for the week of  July 24, 2022

Good Morning, Saint Stephen’s Church,

From Our Prayers of the People 

Anglican Cycle of Prayer: The Church in Wales

Our Leaders: Joseph Biden, President of the United States; Kathy Hochul, Governor of New York State; Gary McCarthy, Mayor of Schenectady

Our Church Leaders: Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury; Michael Curry, Presiding Bishop; Michael G. Smith and Carol Gallagher, Assisting Bishops; and Allison de Kanel, our lay reader

Those who are in need of strength and healing: Mary Ann Harrington, David Humphrey, Marilyn Causey, Eunice Chouffi, Mary Frances Hatfield, Vincent Avila, Priscilla Sprague, and Joe White

Those who celebrate birthdays this week:  Brian Riordon, Oto Jones, and George Woodzell

Those who celebrate baptismal anniversaries this week: Bob Voelker

Those who have died:  Dorothy Diakoff, Jean Hadley, Daisy Santer, and Barbara Mett

This Week’s Lessons

COLLECT

O God, the protector of all who trust in you, without whom

nothing is strong, nothing is holy: Increase and multiply upon us your mercy; that, with you as our ruler and guide, we may so pass through things temporal, that we lose not the things eternal; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

FIRST LESSON

Genesis 18:20-32

The Lord said to Abraham, “How great is the outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah and how very grave their sin! I must go down and see whether they have done altogether according to the outcry that has come to me; and if not, I will know.”

So the men turned from there, and went toward Sodom, while Abraham remained standing before the Lord. Then Abraham came near and said, “Will you indeed sweep away the righteous with the wicked? Suppose there are fifty righteous within the city; will you then sweep away the place and not forgive it for the fifty righteous who are in it? Far be it from you to do such a thing, to slay the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous fare as the wicked! Far be that from you! Shall not the Judge of all the earth do what is just?” And the Lord said, “If I find at Sodom fifty righteous in the city, I will forgive the whole place for their sake.” Abraham answered, “Let me take it upon myself to speak to the Lord, I who am but dust and ashes. Suppose five of the fifty righteous are lacking? Will you destroy the whole city for lack of five?” And he said, “I will not destroy it if I find forty-five there.” Again he spoke to him, “Suppose forty are found there.” He answered, “For the sake of forty I will not do it.” Then he said, “Oh do not let the Lord be angry if I speak. Suppose thirty are found there.” He answered, “I will not do it, if I find thirty there.” He said, “Let me take it upon myself to speak to the Lord. Suppose twenty are found there.” He answered, “For the sake of twenty I will not destroy it.” Then he said, “Oh do not let the Lord be angry if I speak just once more. Suppose ten are found there.” He answered, “For the sake of ten I will not destroy it.”

PSALM 138

1 I will give thanks to you, O Lord, with my whole heart; *
before the gods I will sing your praise.

2 I will bow down toward your holy temple
and praise your Name, *
because of your love and faithfulness;

3 For you have glorified your Name *
and your word above all things.

4 When I called, you answered me; *
you increased my strength within me.

5 All the kings of the earth will praise you, O Lord, *
when they have heard the words of your mouth.

6 They will sing of the ways of the Lord, *
that great is the glory of the Lord.

7 Though the Lord be high, he cares for the lowly; *
he perceives the haughty from afar.

8 Though I walk in the midst of trouble, you keep me safe; *
you stretch forth your hand against the fury of my enemies;
your right hand shall save me.

9 The Lord will make good his purpose for me; *
O Lord, your love endures for ever;
do not abandon the works of your hands.

SECOND LESSON

Colossians 2:6-19

As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving. See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the universe, and not according to Christ. For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily, and you have come to fullness in him, who is the head of every ruler and authority. In him also you were circumcised with a spiritual circumcision, by putting off the body of the flesh in the circumcision of Christ; when you were buried with him in baptism, you were also raised with him through faith in the power of God, who raised him from the dead. And when you were dead in trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive together with him, when he forgave us all our trespasses, erasing the record that stood against us with its legal demands. He set this aside, nailing it to the cross. He disarmed the rulers and authorities and made a public example of them, triumphing over them in it. Therefore do not let anyone condemn you in matters of food and drink or of observing  festivals, new moons, or sabbaths. These are only a shadow of what is to come, but the substance belongs to Christ. Do not let anyone disqualify you, insisting on self-abasement and worship of angels, dwelling on visions, puffed up without cause by a human way of thinking, and not holding fast to the head, from whom the whole body, nourished and held together by its ligaments and sinews, grows with a growth that is from God.

GOSPEL

Luke 11:1-13

Jesus was praying in a certain place, and after he had finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples.” He said to them, “When you pray, say: Father, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come. Give us each day our daily bread. And forgive us our sins, for we ourselves forgive everyone indebted to us. And do not bring us to the time of trial.” And he said to them, “Suppose one of you has a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; for a friend of mine has arrived, and I have nothing to set before him.’ And he answers from within, ‘Do not bother me; the door has already been locked, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot get up and give you anything.’ I tell you, even though he will not get up and give him anything because he is his friend, at least because of his persistence he will get up and give him whatever he needs. “So I say to you, Ask, and it will be given you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you. For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened. Is there anyone among you who, if your child asks for a fish, will give a snake instead of a fish? Or if the child asks for an egg, will give a scorpion? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”

News and Updates 

Music Today

Prelude                                           Reverie                               Still

Opening Hymn                                 #410

Sequence Hymn                               #615

Offertory                                        Adagio                                Bennett

Closing Hymn                                  #711

Postlude                                       Exaltation                             Mansfield

Lectors

Reader one: Dan Schuldt                Reader two: Sam Schuldt

Today we welcome Father Marshall Vang as our clergy. 

From the Senior Warden

The Vestry met with Mother Elizabeth on July 10th to discuss the procedure for conducting a search for a new Rector; the Search Committee has begun work on developing and updating St. Stephen’s profile, as well as developing a parish survey; we will keep you informed on our progress.

We have also begun a search for an Interim Rector, with the assistance of the Diocese; in addition, I am currently working on solidifying the Supply Priest roster for the Fall.

It is important during this transition period that all members of the Parish look for ways to contribute by becoming members of the committees and teams that are hard at work each week. I know that for some, giving of your time is difficult due to a number of reasons, but I urge you to think about it.

We will be conducting a Parish Fair in September where the committees/Teams will have sign up sheets for those interested in participating.

The one thing I have learned during my two years as Senior Warden is that many of us receive meaningful benefits from being part of this church family but give little back in return; I know because I am one who has been on the receiving end but gave little back.

Budd Mazurek

Messenger Updates – If you have anything to add to the August messenger please email the office (office@st-stephens.church) with your information by August 1!

Email list –If you do not currently receive our weekly emails and church updates please email the church office so we can add you.

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. 

Interested in Live-Streaming – See Dan Schuldt after any service for a quick overview of how to live-stream our services.  Only requires a smartphone and a few minutes of time!

Coffee Hour – After a great response last week we have decided to change the format of volunteering for Coffee Hour. We will now have one person sign up to make coffee, and another to clean up after coffee hour.  We ask that if possible, parishioners bring a single item / snack to share whenever they are able (i.e. a bag of chips, crackers & cheese, fruit, a baked item, etc.). This will help split take the work of each coffee hour amongst multiple people / families and hopefully make the work easier for everyone. Sign up is on the homepage of our website.

SiCM pantry donations-  We are collecting personal care items this month:  razors, shaving cream, shampoo, bodywash, soap, toothpaste, lotion, deodorant and toilet paper.  Donations of spices and 8-oz reusable bottles (with lids) are always welcome.

From the Senior Warden – Due to the changes regarding the use of Supply Priest in the diocese, our new summer schedule is as follows:  

7/31 – Mother Sally Heiligman 8/21 – Father Marshall Vang

 8/7 –  Father Marshall Vang 8/28 –  Mother Sally Heiligman

 8/14 – Father Marshall Vang

Altar Flowers are given in remembrance of Ruth Turner.

Reminders

Prayerbook Morning Prayer in Zoom – each morning – contact Becky Holder for the link:   becky.holder@gmail.com.

Our office email is: office@st-stephens.church.

Irish Blessing

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.

Saint Stephen’s Episcopal Church 

Saint Stephen’s Weekly Prayers for the week of  July 17, 2022

Good Morning, Saint Stephen’s Church,

From Our Prayers of the People 

Anglican Cycle of Prayer: The Episcopal Church

Our Leaders: Joseph Biden, President of the United States; Kathy Hochul, Governor of New York State; Gary McCarthy, Mayor of Schenectady

Our Church Leaders: Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury; Michael Curry, Presiding Bishop; Michael G. Smith and Carol Gallagher, Assisting Bishops; and Allison de Kanel, our lay reader

Those who are in need of strength and healing: Mary Ann Harrington, David Humphrey, Marilyn Causey, Eunice Chouffi, Mary Frances Hatfield, Vincent Avila, Priscilla Sprague, and Joe White

Those who celebrate birthdays this week: Mary Ann Harrington, Jean Versocki, Sherry Springstead, Ted Ranslow, Christopher Jones, Rebecca Holder

Those who celebrate baptismal anniversaries this week: William Lyon

Those who celebrate marriage anniversaries this week: Bethany and Dan Schuldt, and Carolyn and Rick Morin

Those who have died: Ruth Turner, Betty Troy

This Week’s Lessons

COLLECT

Almighty God, the fountain of all wisdom, you know our necessities before we ask and our ignorance in asking: Have compassion on our weakness, and mercifully give us those things which for our unworthiness we dare not, and for our blindness we cannot ask; through the worthiness of your Son Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

FIRST LESSON

Genesis 18:1-10a

The Lord appeared to Abraham by the oaks of Mamre, as he sat at the entrance of his tent in the heat of the day. He looked up and saw three men standing near him. When he saw them, he ran from the tent entrance to meet them, and bowed down to the ground. He said, “My lord, if I find favor with you, do not pass by your servant. Let a little water be brought, and wash your feet, and rest yourselves under the tree. Let me bring a little bread, that you may refresh yourselves, and after that you may pass on– since you have come to your servant.” So they said, “Do as you have said.” And Abraham hastened into the tent to Sarah, and said, “Make ready quickly three measures of choice flour, knead it, and make cakes.” Abraham ran to the herd, and took a calf, tender and good, and gave it to the servant, who hastened to prepare it. Then he took curds and milk and the calf that he had prepared, and set it before them; and he stood by them under the tree while they ate.

They said to him, “Where is your wife Sarah?” And he said, “There, in the tent.” Then one said, “I will surely return to you in due season, and your wife Sarah shall have a son.”

PSALM 15

1 Lord, who may dwell in your tabernacle? *
who may abide upon your holy hill?

2 Whoever leads a blameless life and does what is right, *
who speaks the truth from his heart.

3 There is no guile upon his tongue;
he does no evil to his friend; *
he does not heap contempt upon his neighbor.

4 In his sight the wicked is rejected, *
but he honors those who fear the Lord.

5 He has sworn to do no wrong *
and does not take back his word.

6 He does not give his money in hope of gain, *
nor does he take a bribe against the innocent.

7 Whoever does these things *
shall never be overthrown.

SECOND LESSON

Colossians 1:15-28

He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; for in him all things in heaven and on earth were created, things visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or powers–all things have been created through him and for him. He himself is before all things, and in him all things hold together. He is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that he might come to have first place in everything. For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him God was pleased to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, by making peace through the blood of his cross. And you who were once estranged and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his fleshly body through death, so as to present you holy and blameless and irreproachable before him– provided that you continue securely established and steadfast in the faith, without shifting from the hope promised by the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven. I, Paul, became a servant of this gospel. I am now rejoicing in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I am completing what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for the sake of his body, that is, the church. I became its servant according to God’s commission that was given to me for you, to make the word of God fully known, the mystery that has been hidden throughout the ages and generations but has now been revealed to his saints. To them God chose to make known how great among the Gentiles are the riches of the glory of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. It is he whom we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone in all wisdom, so that we may present everyone mature in Christ.

GOSPEL

Luke 10:38-42

As Jesus and his disciples went on their way, Jesus entered a certain village, where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. She had a sister named Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to what he was saying. But Martha was distracted by her many tasks; so she came to him and asked, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her then to help me.” But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things; there is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part, which will not be taken away from her.”

News and Updates 

Music Today

Prelude                                     Adagio from Sonata I                Mendelssohn

Opening Hymn                                  #401

Sequence Hymn                                #467

Offertory                              Blessed Jesus, We Are Here           Bach

Closing Hymn                                   #488

Postlude                                Ceremonial Processional              Haan

Lectors

Reader one: Joe Palko                 Reader two: Peter Nelson

Today we welcome Father Marshall Vang as our clergy. 

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. 

Interested in Live-Streaming – See Dan Schuldt after any service for a quick overview of how to live-stream our services.  Only requires a smartphone and a few minutes of time!

Coffee Hour – After a great response last week we have decided to change the format of volunteering for Coffee Hour. We will now have one person sign up to make coffee, and another to clean up after coffee hour.  We ask that if possible, parishioners bring a single item / snack to share whenever they are able (i.e. a bag of chips, crackers & cheese, fruit, a baked item, etc.). This will help split take the work of each coffee hour amongst multiple people / families and hopefully make the work easier for everyone. Sign up is on the homepage of our website.

SiCM pantry donations-  We are collecting personal care items this month:  razors, shaving cream, shampoo, bodywash, soap, toothpaste, lotion, deodorant and toilet paper.  Donations of spices and 8-oz reusable bottles (with lids) are always welcome.

From the Senior Warden – Due to the changes regarding the use of Supply Priest in the diocese, our new summer schedule is as follows:  

7/24 – Father Marshall Vang 8/14 – Father Marshall Vang

7/31 – Mother Sally Heiligman 8/21 – Father Marshall Vang

 8/7 –  Father Marshall Vang 8/28 –  Mother Sally Heiligman

Altar Flowers are a nice way to remember those who have gone before us, to honor those who are still here, or recognize a special event.  Slips are available from an Usher.

A Service to remember Ruth Turner will be held on Saturday, July 23 at 12:00 in our church. All are welcome to attend.

Reminders

Prayerbook Morning Prayer in Zoom – each morning – contact Becky Holder for the link:   becky.holder@gmail.com.

Our office email is: office@st-stephens.church.

Irish Blessing

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.

Saint Stephen’s Episcopal Church 

Saint Stephen’s Weekly Prayers for the week of  July 10,2022

Good Morning, Saint Stephen’s Church,

From Our Prayers of the People 

Anglican Cycle of Prayer: The Church of the Province of Uganda

Our Leaders: Joseph Biden, President of the United States; Kathy Hochul, Governor of New York State; Gary McCarthy, Mayor of Schenectady

Our Church Leaders: Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury; Michael Curry, Presiding Bishop; Michael G. Smith and Carol Gallagher, Assisting Bishops; and Allison, our lay reader

Those who are in need of strength and healing: Mary Ann, David, Marilyn, Eunice, Ruth, Mary Frances, Vincent, Priscilla, and Joe

Those who celebrate birthdays this week: Donald, Doreen, Kati, Gillian, Ray, James, Susan, and Austin

Those who celebrate baptismal anniversaries this week: Jane and Evan

Those who celebrate marriage anniversaries this week: Robert and Shirley , and Susan and Doug .

Those who have died: George Buell and Barbara Dobbins Stratton 

This Week’s Lessons

COLLECT

O  Lord, mercifully receive the prayers of your people who call upon you, and grant that they may know and understand what things they ought to do, and also may have grace and power faithfully to accomplish them; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

FIRST LESSON

Deuteronomy 30:9-14

Moses said to the people of Israel, “The Lord your God will make you abundantly prosperous in all your undertakings, in the fruit of your body, in the fruit of your livestock, and in the fruit of your soil. For the Lord will again take delight in prospering you, just as he delighted in prospering your ancestors, when you obey the Lord your God by observing his commandments and decrees that are written in this book of the law, because you turn to the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul.

“Surely, this commandment that I am commanding you today is not too hard for you, nor is it too far away. It is not in heaven, that you should say, ‘Who will go up to heaven for us, and get it for us so that we may hear it and observe it?’ Neither is it beyond the sea, that you should say, ‘Who will cross to the other side of the sea for us, and get it for us so that we may hear it and observe it?’ No, the word is very near to you; it is in your mouth and in your heart for you to observe.”

PSALM 25:1-9

1 To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul;
my God, I put my trust in you; *
let me not be humiliated,
nor let my enemies triumph over me.

2 Let none who look to you be put to shame; *
let the treacherous be disappointed in their schemes.

3 Show me your ways, O Lord, *
and teach me your paths.

4 Lead me in your truth and teach me, *
for you are the God of my salvation;
in you have I trusted all the day long.

5 Remember, O Lord, your compassion and love, *
for they are from everlasting.

6 Remember not the sins of my youth and my transgressions;*
remember me according to your love
and for the sake of your goodness, O Lord.

7 Gracious and upright is the Lord; *
therefore he teaches sinners in his way.

8 He guides the humble in doing right *
and teaches his way to the lowly.

9 All the paths of the Lord are love and faithfulness *
to those who keep his covenant and his testimonies.

SECOND LESSON

Colossians 1:1-14

Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, To the saints and faithful brothers and sisters in Christ in Colossae: Grace to you and peace from God our Father. In our prayers for you we always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, for we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love that you have for all the saints, because of the hope laid up for you in heaven. You have heard of this hope before in the word of the truth, the gospel that has come to you. Just as it is bearing fruit and growing in the whole world, so it has been bearing fruit among yourselves from the day you heard it and truly comprehended the grace of God. This you learned from Epaphras, our beloved fellow servant. He is a faithful minister of Christ on your behalf, and he has made known to us your love in the Spirit. For this reason, since the day we heard it, we have not ceased praying for you and asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of God’s will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so that you may lead lives worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, as you bear fruit in every good work and as you grow in the knowledge of God. May you be made strong with all the strength that comes from his glorious power, and may you be prepared to endure everything with patience, while joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has enabled you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the light. He has rescued us from the power of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

GOSPEL

Luke 10:25-37

Just then a lawyer stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he said,

“what must I do to inherit eternal life?” He said to him, “What is written in the law? What do you read there?” He answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” And he said to him, “You have given the right answer; do this, and you will live.” But wanting to justify himself, he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell into the hands of robbers, who stripped him, beat him, and went away, leaving him half dead. Now by chance a priest was going down that road; and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan while traveling came near him; and when he saw him, he was moved with pity. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, having poured oil and wine on them. Then he put him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him. The next day he took out two denarii, gave them to the innkeeper, and said, ‘Take care of him; and when I come back, I will repay you whatever more you spend.’ Which of these three, do you think, was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of the robbers?” He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.”

News and Updates 

Music Today

Prelude                            Meditation from “Thais”             Mendelssohn

Opening Hymn                             #390

Sequence Hymn                           #660

Offertory                                      Largo                                         Vivaldi

Closing Hymn                              #609

Postlude                                   Millenium                               Rawsthorne

Lectors

Reader one: Millie Reader two: Linda

Today we welcome Mother Elizabeth Papazoglakis as our clergy. 

New Ushers Needed – We are looking for new ushers to help us on Sunday mornings.  If you are interested please see Vicki or Allison for more information. 

Interested in Live-Streaming – See Dan after any service for a quick overview of how to live-stream our services.  Only requires a smartphone and a few minutes of time!

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!

From the Senior Warden – Due to the changes regarding the use of Supply Priests in the diocese, our new summer schedule is as follows:

7/17 – Father Marshall Vang     8/7 –  Father Marshall Vang

7/24 – Father Marshall Vang     8/14 – Father Marshall Vang

7/31 – Mother Sally Heiligman    8/21 – Father Marshall Vang

      8/28 – Mother Sally Heiligman

Altar Flowers- given this week by Doug & Susan for their wedding anniversary.

Reminders

Prayerbook Morning Prayer in Zoom – each morning – contact Becky for the link:   becky.holder@gmail.com.

Our office email is: office@st-stephens.church.

Irish Blessing

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.

Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Thursday, June 30, 2022

Saint Stephen’s Episcopal Church 

Staying Safe and Staying Connected

This will be the last ‘Daily Prayer’ email from me.  Begun at the onset of the pandemic two years ago to help keep our congregation prayerfully together in our isolation, it has become a spiritual link between me and all my church family and friends.  If you wish, you will still receive a weekly email of the Sunday’s readings and various announcements for the life of St. Stephen’s congregation.  Jrm+

Good Morning, Saint Stephen’s Church,  

We continue our life of daily prayer. The Lord be with you!

Today’s Prayer

Guardian, guide, no pillar of cloud by day nor fire by night,

Yet I sense your presence with me, God of the journey.

You are walking with me into a new land.

You are guarding me in my vulnerable moment.

You are dwelling within me as I depart from here.

You are promising to be my peace as I face the struggles

of distance from friends and security,

the planting of feet and heart in a strange place.

Renew in me a deep trust in you. Calm my anxiousness.

As I reflect on my life I can clearly see

how you have been there in all of my comings.

You will always be with me in everything.

I do not know how I am being resettled,

but I place my life into the welcoming arms of your love.

Encircle my heart with your peace.

May your powerful presence run like a strong thread

through the fibers of my being. Amen.

–        Adapted from an ancient Celtic blessing

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, Marilyn, Eunice, Ruth, Mary Frances, Vincent, Priscilla, Joe, and all their families.  

For David , Budd and Carole– today is their baptismal anniversary!

For all the blessings of this life.

For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion:  The Diocese of West Malaysia – The Church of the Province of South East Asia.

For all who have died:  Mary Ann Baum.

For one another.

Something to share

Ninety-Fifth Street

Words can bang around in your head

Forever, if you let them and you give them room.

I used to love poetry, and mostly I still do,

Though sometimes “I, too, dislike it.” There must be

Something real beyond the fiddle and perfunctory

Consolations and the quarrels—as of course

There is, though what it is is difficult to say.

The salt is on the briar rose, the fog is in the fir trees.

I didn’t know what it was, and I don’t know now,

But it was what I started out to do, and now, a lifetime later,    

All I’ve really done. The Opening of the Field,

Roots and Branches, Rivers and Mountains: I sat in my room

Alone, their fragments shored against the ruin or revelation

That was sure to come, breathing in their secret atmosphere,

Repeating them until they almost seemed my own.

We like to think our lives are what they study to become,

And yet so much of life is waiting, waiting on a whim.

So much of what we are is sheer coincidence,

Like a sentence whose significance is retrospective,

Made up out of elementary particles that are in some sense

Simply sounds, like syllables that finally settle into place.

You probably think that this is a poem about poetry

(And obviously it is), yet its real subject is time,

For that’s what poetry is—a way to live through time

And sometimes, just for a while, to bring it back.

                            – John Koethe

The Tide Rises, the Tide Falls

The tide rises, the tide falls,

The twilight darkens, the curlew calls;

Along the sea-sands damp and brown

The traveller hastens toward the town,

      And the tide rises, the tide falls.

Darkness settles on roofs and walls,

But the sea, the sea in the darkness calls;

The little waves, with their soft, white hands,

Efface the footprints in the sands,

      And the tide rises, the tide falls.

The morning breaks; the steeds in their stalls

Stamp and neigh, as the hostler calls;

The day returns, but nevermore

Returns the traveller to the shore,

      And the tide rises, the tide falls.

                   – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

News and Updates 

SiCM Summer Meals Still Need Us!  We need two more volunteers for July 5 and one for July 6.  Thanks to all of you who have signed up.

Please contact Richey Woodzell at erwoodzell@gmail.com for any days you’re willing to volunteer or serve as a sub.

Details: 

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:  12:40 to 2:30 

Reminders

Prayerbook Morning Prayer in Zoom – will continue each morning.  Join Allison de Kanel and others 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:   becky.holder@gmail.com).

The office email is: office@st-stephens.church.

Irish Blessing

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. God bless you and may God be with us in the days ahead.

Goodbye, Farewell, Amen,

James+

Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Staying Safe and Staying Connected

Good Morning, Saint Stephen’s Church,  

We continue our life of daily prayer. The Lord be with you!

Today’s Prayer

Almighty God, whose blessed apostles Peter and Paul glorified you by their martyrdom: Grant that your Church, instructed by their teaching and example, and knit together in unity by your Spirit, may ever stand firm upon the one foundation, which is Jesus Christ our Lord; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

         –  Book of Common Prayer, p.241

Today is the Feast of St. Peter and St. Paul.

Saints Peter and Paul, the two greatest leaders of the early Church, are commemorated separately, Peter on January 18, for his confession of Jesus as the Messiah, and Paul on January 25, for his conversion. They are commemorated together on this day in observance of the tradition of the Church that they both died as martyrs in Rome during the persecution under Nero, in 64.

Paul, the well-educated and cosmopolitan Jew of the Dispersion, and Peter, the uneducated fisherman from Galilee, had differences of opinion in the early years of the Church concerning the mission to the Gentiles. More than once, Paul speaks of rebuking Peter for his continued insistence on Jewish exclusiveness; yet their common commitment to Christ and the proclamation of the Gospel proved stronger than their differences; and both eventually carried that mission to Rome, where they were martyred. According to tradition, Paul was granted the right of a Roman citizen to be beheaded by a sword; Peter, like Christ, was crucified, though with head downward.

Today is a major holiday in Rome. Banks, stores, and even the Vatican are closed. Celebrations there include lots of flowers and fireworks.

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: Oonie, Walker, Gerald, Dan, Mary, Bill, Diana, Jackie, Susan, Adrian, Hugh, Craig, Marilyn, Sylvia, Laura, Angelina

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 Aralyn – today is her baptismal anniversary!

For all the blessings of this life.

For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion:  The Diocese of Southern Malawi – The Church of the Province of Central Africa.

For all who have died:  Mary Ann Baum.

For one another.

Something to share

St. Peter

St. Peter once: “Lord, doest Thou wash my feet?”—

Much more I say: Lord, dost Thou stand and knock

At my closed heart more rugged than a rock,

Bolted and barred, for Thy soft touch unmet,

Nor garnished in any wise made sweet?

Owls roost within and dancing satyrs mock.

Lord, I have heard the crowing of the cock

And have not wept: ah, Lord, thou knowest it.

Yet still I hear Thee knocking, still I hear:

“Open to Me, look on Me eye to eye,

That I may wring thy heart and make it whole;

And teach thee love because I hold thee dear

And sup with thee in gladness soul with soul,

And sup with thee in glory by and by.” 

                –  Christina Rossetti

A Sonnet for Saint Paul

An enemy whom God has made a friend,

A righteous man discounting righteousness,

Last to believe and first for God to send,

He found the fountain in the wilderness.

Thrown to the ground and raised at the same moment,

A prisoner who set his captors free,

A naked man with love his only garment,

A blinded man who helped the world to see,

A Jew who had been perfect in the law,

Blesses the flesh of every other race

And helps them see what the apostles saw;

The glory of the lord in Jesus’ face.

Strong in his weakness, joyful in his pains,

And bound by love, he freed us from our chains.

                   – Malcolm Guite

News and Updates 

SiCM Summer Meals Still Need Us!  We need two more volunteers for July 5 and one for July 6.  Thanks to all of you who have signed up.

Please contact Richey Woodzell at erwoodzell@gmail.com or 518-852-6796 for any days you’re willing to volunteer or serve as a sub.

Details: 

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:  12:40 to 2:30 

Reminders

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: james.ross.mcd@gmail.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:   becky.holder@gmail.com).

If you need a prayerbook, and are not in a position to purchase one, please contact me: james.ross.mcd@gmail.com. I will make sure you have your own Book of Common Prayer. 

Our office email is: office@st-stephens.church.

Our goal is for all of us to stay in touch and connected.

Irish Blessing

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. God bless you and may God be with us in the days ahead.

Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Staying Safe and Staying Connected

Good Morning, Saint Stephen’s Church,

Today’s Prayer

When I need just a minute

God,

I need to settle down. I am feeling rushed and driven, careening from one task to another and it feels like I’m in motion but I’m not going anywhere. So God, could you point out what is amiss?…Gather me into a quiet place, if only in my mind, so that what is happening around me, or should be happening, doesn’t take up all my awareness.

God, be God of this moment. Fully. God of my heartbeat, and my intentions. God of my urgency and of my unspoken desires. Show me what is possible, and what is fitting for this time.

Bless me God. Oh God of my life, thank you for showing me that small lives can be beautiful, valuable, even efficient. 

–         Kate Bowler

Kate Bowler is associate professor of history of Christianity in North America at Duke Divinity School. Her published scholarly books explore the prosperity gospel, a Christian movement centered on promises of wealth and happiness, and Christian women celebrities within American evangelicalism. Bowler is also the author of a bestselling spiritual memoir about her experience with Stage IV cancer, titled Everything Happens for a Reason (And Other Lies I’ve Loved). She now creates a variety of resources – such as a podcast, a book club, and prayers – that support people in taking a more honest look at suffering and faith. The above prayer is taken from “7 Prayers for Uncertain Times,” which you can download in full here: https://katebowler.com/7-prayers-for-uncertain-times/

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 Mary Frances – today is her baptismal anniversary!

For all the blessings of this life.

For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion:  The Diocese of Northern Malawi – The Church of the Province of Central Africa.

For all who have died:  Mary Ann Baum.

For one another.

Something to share

First Letter of the Hebrew Women to St Paul

Hebrew Women, apostles of Christ Jesus to Paul,

alleged saint, notorious scribbler: grace to you

and peace from God our Father. Now look here:

Adam could have said ‘no thanks’ or ‘apples

disagree with me’. He didn’t. He had a bite

as well. So he was deceived. Just like Eve.

We’re equal and get used to it. We washed his feet,

made his tea, stood under the cross.

Where were you? On some road to Damascus.

Useless. Chapter 2: this new covenant is all very well

but we have a soft spot for the old one. That tabernacle

had our best candlesticks in it, a gold jar

with jam by Manna and a lot of tablet. We want

it back. You promise this and you promise that.

Be quiet. Let the hidden person of the heart speak out.

Chapter the last: every Tom, Dick and Harry’s

given hospitality at yours in case they might be

angels. Fine. But haven’t you noticed the spinning

saucers we’ve got above our heads?

Faith is a stubborn doubt before what you despair of

and the conviction of things you can see with your own two eyes.

–         David Kinloch

News and Updates 

How Episcopalians Can Respond to Gun Violence – On Tuesday, June 28 at 8 p.m. Eastern on Zoom, Bishops United Against Gun Violence will host “Doing Our Part: How Episcopalians Can Respond to Gun Violence in Our Communities and States.” 

For more information visit the website: bishopsagainstgunviolence.org/doing-our-part-how-episcopalians-can-respond-to-gun-violence-in-our-communities-and-states/

You can  register to join the Zoom meeting:

https://us06web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZAqd-itrj0tHtJTsL3KBaIEN065KX0ncIUX

SiCM Summer Meals Still Need Us!

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 erwoodzell@gmail.com or 518-852-6796 for any days you’re willing to volunteer or serve as a sub. 

Reminders

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: james.ross.mcd@gmail.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:   becky.holder@gmail.com).

If you need a prayerbook, and are not in a position to purchase one, please contact me: james.ross.mcd@gmail.com. I will make sure you have your own Book of Common Prayer. 

Our office email is: office@st-stephens.church.

Our goal is for all of us to stay in touch and connected.

Irish Blessing

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.

Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Monday, June 27, 2022

Staying Safe and Staying Connected

Good Morning, Saint Stephen’s Church,

We continue our life of daily prayer. The Lord be with you!

Today’s Prayer

For Times of Change

Assist us, Lord, in living hopefully into the future. In the face of change, help us to set unnecessary fears aside and to recognize our potential for creative response. Help us to develop a reasonable optimism when confronted by “the new” and to guard against our own defensiveness. Be with us as we remember and celebrate former times, and keep us from unreasonable yearning for them, which takes us from the work you have set before us in our time. All this we ask in the name of your Child, our Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.

      – The Rev. Linda C. Smith-Criddle

This prayer was found in the collection Women’s Uncommon Prayers: Our Lives Revealed, Nurtured, Celebrated. Work on this book began with a meeting of the Episcopal Church’s Council of Women’s Ministries in 1999. The collection’s preface states that they had “a vision of Episcopal women speaking authentically with one another and with their church at large; a vision of women sharing the richness and diversity of their spirituality.” The Rev. Linda C. Smith-Criddle is an Episcopal priest and former hospital chaplain.

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, Marilyn, Eunice, Ruth, Mary Frances, Vincent, Priscilla, Joe, and all their families.  

For Salvatore, Bethany and David- today is their birthday!

For Joan – today is her baptismal anniversary!

For all the blessings of this life.

For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion:  The Diocese of Lake Malawi – The Church of the Province of Central Africa.

For all who have died:  Mary Ann Baum.

For one another.

Something to share

Lost

Stand still. The trees ahead and bushes beside you

Are not lost. Wherever you are is called Here,

And you must treat it as a powerful stranger,

Must ask permission to know it and be known.

The forest breathes. Listen. It answers,

I have made this place around you.

If you leave it, you may come back again, saying Here.

No two trees are the same to Raven.

No two branches are the same to Wren.

If what a tree or a bush does is lost on you,

You are surely lost. Stand still. The forest knows

Where you are. You must let it find you.

      –  David Wagoner

News and Updates 

SiCM Summer Meals Still Need Us!

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 erwoodzell@gmail.com or 518-852-6796 for any days you’re willing to volunteer or serve as a sub.

Reminders

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: james.ross.mcd@gmail.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 Holder for the link:   becky.holder@gmail.com).

If you need a prayerbook, and are not in a position to purchase one, please contact me: james.ross.mcd@gmail.com. I will make sure you have your own Book of Common Prayer. 

Our office email is: office@st-stephens.church.

Our goal is for all of us to stay in touch and connected.

Irish Blessing

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. God bless you and may God be with us in the days ahead.

Saint Stephen’s Daily Prayers, Sunday, June 26, 2022

Staying Safe and Staying Connected

Good Morning, Saint Stephen’s Church,

Today is Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time.

The Collect for the Day

Almighty God, you have built your Church upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief cornerstone: Grant us so to be joined together in unity of spirit by their teaching, that we may be made a holy temple acceptable to you; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

The Gospel

The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke 9:51-62:

When the days drew near for Jesus to be taken up, he set his face to go to Jerusalem. And he sent messengers ahead of him. On their way they entered a village of the Samaritans to make ready for him; but they did not receive him, because his face was set toward Jerusalem. When his disciples James and John saw it, they said, “Lord, do you want us to command fire to come down from heaven and consume them?” But he turned and rebuked them. Then they went on to another village.

As they were going along the road, someone said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.” To another he said, “Follow me.” But he said, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.” But Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead; but as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” Another said, “I will follow you, Lord; but let me first say farewell to those at my home.” Jesus said to him, “No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.”

The Gospel of the Lord.

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: Oonie, Walker, Gerald, Dan, Mary, Bill, Diana, Jackie, Susan, Adrian, Hugh, Craig, Marilyn, Sylvia, Laura, Angelina  

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 Elissa – today is her birthday!

For all the blessings of this life.

For our dioceses in the Anglican Communion:  Province of the Episcopal Church of Sudan.

For all who have died:  Mary Ann Baum.

For one another.

Something to share

 ‘Epilogue’

Maybe our paths will cross
when this universe folds in and makes another.
Maybe, at the point

when all that is, and all that’s ever been,
collapses into everything else and is remade,
our paths will cross, however briefly, and

our terminus become a junction.
It may be a long shot. I will take it
and hope and trust our paths will cross again.

  Oliver Tearle

News and Updates 

Our Sunday Eucharist begins at 9:30am

If you would like to attend the Sunday service from home,  just  visit:  https://www.facebook.com/SaintStephensSchenectady/ at 9:30 am 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 9:30. 

This morning’s Lessons:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1kamcSU03FiJ2tlq6bJT-37R5mBCXQHkW/edit?usp=sharing&ouid=109485766909959793279&rtpof=true&sd=true

Insert:

This morning’s bulletin:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1WNe64BT6QDf5zC5OUyjWqRIS8fYGM7YM/edit?usp=sharing&ouid=109485766909959793279&rtpof=true&sd=true 

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 erwoodzell@gmail.com 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.

Reminders

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: james.ross.mcd@gmail.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:   becky.holder@gmail.com).

If you need a prayerbook, and are not in a position to purchase one, please contact me: james.ross.mcd@gmail.com. I will make sure you have your own Book of Common Prayer. 

Our office email is: office@st-stephens.church.

Our goal is for all of us to stay in touch and connected.

Irish Blessing

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. God bless you and may God be with us in the days ahead.

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