O God, you made us in your own image and redeemed us through Jesus your Son: Look with compassion on the whole human family; take away the arrogance and hatred which infect our hearts; break down the walls that separate us; unite us in bonds of love; and work through our struggle and confusion to accomplish your purposes on earth; that, in your good time, all nations and races may serve you in harmony around your heavenly throne; through Jesus Christ our Lord. (BCP p. 815) The Church of Our Saviour is sponsoring a simple Candle Light Prayer Vigil on Sunday night at 6:00 in Emerson Park here in Milford. This is intended for the whole community and will be interfaith or no faith based...it is simply a time for us to gather as community to pray for peace, reconciliation and safety as we pray for the victims and perpetrators of violence.
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Genesis 2:15 - And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it. "A nation that destroys its soils destroys itself. Forests are the lungs of our land, purifying the air and giving fresh strength to our people." - Franklin D. Roosevelt It's amazing that we live in a world that some still deny the damage we have done to one of the greatest gifts God has given us. We have had some great leaders who have recognized the importance of protecting even the air we breathe. The other night I looked out the window and saw a pink sky! My first thought was how great we are to be able to enjoy nature in our back yards. I say thank you Lord! Roger Fortier Sexton
Then our mouth was filled with laughter, and our tongue with shouts of joy; then it was said among the nations, "The Lord has done great things for them." Psalm 126:2 The small blue flowers that cover the ground around the base of this Blue Bottle Tree must have planted themselves, because they just appeared one Spring and blended in with the environment. The bottle tree is symbolic of an old custom of placing the empty bottle upside down on a limb so that the warmth of a sunny day will then fill them with the sounds of love, laughter, and memories shared by friends at this place. Barbara Mace, Parishioner
The collect appointed for the feast of Saint Mary the Virgin: O God, you have taken to yourself the blessed Virgin Mary, mother of your incarnate Son: Grant that we, who have been redeemed by his blood, may share with her the glory of your eternal kingdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen. My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, my spirit rejoices in God my Savior; * for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant. From this day all generations will call me blessed: * the Almighty has done great things for me, and holy is his Name. He has mercy on those who fear him * in every generation. He has shown the strength of his arm, * he has scattered the proud in their conceit. He has cast down the mighty from their thrones, * and has lifted up the lowly. He has filled the hungry with good things, * and the rich he has sent away empty. He has come to the help of his servant Israel, * for he has remembered his promise of mercy, The promise he made to our fathers, * to Abraham and his children for ever. Luke 1:46-55
Remember that prayer does not consist in making pretty speeches or high sounding or consoling phrases. Prayer is to be not just one activity among all others in our daily lives, but the fundamental activity in our life. Repetitive prayers help us achieve a supportive framework and an optimal balance in our existence. At times, we may feel inadequate in our prayer life: all the more reason to pray and to rely on well-learned and often repeated prayers. Rare would it be to love someone and say, "I love you" only once. Our Lord God hears with gladness the prayers we pray. Gilbert K. Chesterton observed that repetition is a childlike characteristic, liking to hear the same story again and again, being reassured of parental love and hearing oft-used phrases. I believe that God smiles on innocence and vitality in our prayers, never finding repeated prayers monotonous or robotic. Prayer is a time of being WITH God. We may pray, "Our Father, who art in Heaven," but we are not saying, "I am here and You are there." We may pray, "The Lord is my Shepherd," - but we are not seeing the Lord far away in a field with sheep. Rather, in prayer and repeated prayer, we are faithfully affirming, "We are in this together." I believe that repetitive prayer is especially important in times when we are weary, overburdened, in pain or discomfort of mind, body and/or spirit, and when we have simply lost our way. God blesses our prayers and us while we pray. We might simply say, "Thy will be done" and trust. Gayle Feick, Parishioner
Jesus Walking on the Sea of Galilee, Matthew 14:22-33 One of the Five Practices of the Episcopal Church of New Hampshire is "We splash water." Come and get your feet wet today! We'll hear how Jesus walked on water and inspired his disciple Peter to try to do the same. And, through the waters of Baptism, we'll welcome a brand new disciple, to St. Matthew's Church. Come and consider what these two events have in common. Celeste+
Pilgrimage: Endings & New Beginnings From the River Blog, Published July 10, 2017 http://kairosearth.org/category/river-blog/ "Though beautiful, Bishop Rob Hirschfeld said the journey wasn't always easy. In the first 100 miles, there was still some snow on the ground, there was no cell service and the temperature dipped to 38 degrees. However, Hirschfeld said the trip was never unpleasant, even when the pack was caught in a storm in Vermont. "It was raining and we were standing on our life preservers in the middle of a field in case lightning struck the ground and we were looking at each other in silence and we were utterly happy because we were connected with each other," he said. "We've found that even without shelter, we are at home." Reflections will be continued on Saturday August 19
Judgment We hear Jesus say it is not our place to make a condemning judgment about another person. Whoever they are, they are loved by Jesus. Jesus is dying to love them. - Br. Curtis Almquist Society of Saint John the Evangelist
Flat St. Matt has enjoyed the beach a lot this summer! He visited North Beach in Hampton with Rosemarie & Steve Fry.
Flat St. Matt enjoys a swim at Barnard Park with a friend!