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Meditations

  • Thursday November 23, 2017

    The collect for Thanksgiving:   Almighty and gracious Father, we give you thanks for the fruits of the earth in their season and for the labors of those who harvest them. Make us, we pray, faithful stewards of your great bounty, for the provision of our necessities and the relief of all who are in need, to the glory of your Name; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
  • Wednesday November 22, 2017

    For this busy travel period ahead of us, a Prayer for Travelers:   O God, our heavenly Father, whose glory fills the whole creation, and whose presence we find wherever we go: Preserve those who travel, surround them with your loving care; protect them from every danger; and bring them in safety to their journey's end; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
  • Tuesday November 21, 2017

    In her essay, White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack, Peggy McIntosh writes, "I was taught to see racism only in individual acts of meanness, not in invisible systems conferring dominance on my group." In occasional meditations this season, I'm sharing some of her observations.   Here are a few more of the daily effects of white privilege that Ms. McIntosh has discovered in her own life: * I can remain oblivious of the language and customs of persons of color who constitute the world's majority without feeling in my culture any penalty for such oblivion. * I can criticize our government and talk about how much I fear its policies and behavior without being seen as a cultural outsider. * I can be pretty sure that if I ask to talk to the "person in charge", I will be facing a person of my race. * If a traffic cop pulls me over or if the IRS audits my tax return, I can be sure I haven't been singled out because of my race. * I can easily buy posters, post-cards, picture books, greeting cards, dolls, toys and children's magazines featuring people of my race.   Think about it. Do you have these advantages? What would your life be like if you didn't? Do you know of other people who don't have these advantages?   Celeste Hemingson+
    Celeste Hemingson+
  • Monday November 20, 2017

    It is my eager expectation and hope that I will not be put to shame in any way, but that by my speaking with all boldness, Christ will be exalted now as always in my body, whether by life or by death.  Phil. 1:20   There are people who exalt themselves. You have met them. Every sentence seems to start with "I", every opinion is only valid if it is the same as theirs, they seem to suck all the air out of the room. Then there are the others. They bring peace wherever they go, there is a joy in their presence, you know that everyone matters just by how they treat each person. I can only pray that the more I let go of my fear, my rigidity, my self-importance, I hope to exalt Christ, and to become the bringer of peace and the presence of Christ into my little corner of the world.   How to you bring Christ into your world?   Linnae Peterson, M.Div.
    Linnae Peterson, M.Div.
  • Sunday November 19, 2017

    The very wise Prayer for our Nation (BCP p. 820) ends with these words: "In the time of prosperity, fill our hearts with thankfulness, and in the day of trouble, suffer not our trust in you to fail."   Written over 100 years ago and still relevant today, this entreaty acknowledges how quick we are to forget the Source of all goodness when we are showered by goodness. And it also recognizes how easy it is to forget that it is God in whom we live and move and have our being in good times and bad.   As we approach the Thanksgiving holiday I'm praying about the fact that this past year has been both: a time of prosperity that has also been a troubled time. On both accounts, I'm giving thanks for St. Matthew's church. Your examples of giving our of gratitude for what you have received have inspired me and shown me the face of Christ, the greatest gift of all. And your presence during the times of danger and disappointment in the world around us has reassured me that God is still speaking and working to heal this broken world.               Your sister in Christ,                          Celeste+   Please join me in worship this morning at 8am or 10am, and in fellowship at the Parish Breakfast, serving from 8:45-9:30am.
    Celeste+
  • Saturday November 18, 2017

    And let us consider how to provoke one another to love and good deeds, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:24-25 COMMUNITY THANKSGIVING SERVICE      Hosted by:  Hillside United Methodist Church 82 Center Street     Goffstown, NH Sunday, November 19, 2017 at 7:00 PM   Sponsored by the Goffstown Clergy Association. Come together with: **St. Lawrence Church** Harvest Christian Church**Goffstown Christian Fellowship**Goffstown Congregational Church** **St. Matthew's Episcopal Church**Hillside United Methodist** **Chaplain - Goffstown Police Department**  - to worship and give thanks.   Vocal and Music by Goffstown Churches and New Boston Church Musicians and Choirs, and Goffstown High School under the direction of Mr. Joshua Desrochers   Offerings will support the Clergy Association's Winter Emergency Needs Funds
  • Thursday November 16, 2017

    The Ministry of the Word   Boy does this photo bring back some memories for me! It reminds me of when my children were young and would come up to church on a quiet Saturday afternoon to set the altar. Sometimes they'd sit quietly, but more likely they'd take the verger cross and march up and down the aisle or busy themselves exploring other things. This photo is a huge part of the reason I love St. Matthew's  Church. It is 'home' for so many. This shows how comfortable children are at this church that they are happy to sit at the altar and read while adults are busy doing their own things around them. May you all feel home at St. Matthew's Church. Peace, Kelly Kennerson Parish Administrator
    Kelly Kennerson
  • Wednesday November 15, 2017

    The Problem of Good   At some point, I suppose, everyone wrestles with the problem of evil: if God is out there, why is there evil in the world? Recently I ran across this medieval quote, which stands the problem on its head: "Si Deus est, unde malum? Si non est, unde bonum?" Loosely translated, "If God exists, where does evil come from? If God does not exist, where does good come from?"   Maybe I lead a sheltered life, but I find the second question harder to answer than the first. I encounter the goodness of God many times a day, mediated through the love of family and friends, through art and literature and music, and through the beauty of nature on an autumn morning in New Hampshire. Where does this good come from, if not from God?   Where are you encountering good today? How do you account for it?   Paul Peterson, Sr. Choir
    Paul Peterson
  • Tuesday November 14, 2017

    In her essay, White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack, Peggy McIntosh writes, "I was taught to see racism only in individual acts of meanness, not in invisible systems conferring dominance on my group." In occasional meditations this season, I'm sharing some of here observations.   Here are a few more of the daily effects of white privilege that Ms. McIntosh has discovered in her own life:   * I can talk with my mouth full and not have people put this down to my color. * I can swear, or dress in second hand clothes, or not answer letters, without having people attribute these choices to the bad morals, the poverty or the illiteracy of my race. * I can speak in public to a powerful male group without putting my race on trial. * I can do well in a challenging situation without being called a credit to my race. * I am never asked to speak for all the people of my racial group.   Think about it. Do you have these advantages? What would your life be like if you didn't? Do you know of other people who don't have these advantages?   Celeste Hemingson+
    Celeste Hemingson+
  • Monday November 13, 2017

    And this is my prayer, that your love may overflow more and more with knowledge and full insight to help you to determine what is best, so that in the day of Christ you may be pure and blameless, having produced the harvest of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ for the glory and praise of God. Phil. 1:9-11   I love the phrase, "harvest of righteousness". It conjures up images of fields and farm stands full of plenty of autumn, apples and pumpkins, the last of the summer corn and zucchini, butternut squash and cabbage. It is a time of plenty. No harvest happens without hard work. Preparing the soil, planting, weeding, watering, battling bugs and blight, all are necessary in order for the crops to grow. Likewise our harvest of righteousness doesn't just happen. Our harvest requires us to pursue Christ, through prayer, through the study of scripture, through listening to Christ call to us, and acting on that call.   What do you need to do for your own "harvest of righteousness"?   Linnae Peterson, M.Div.
    Linnae Peterson, M.Div.

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