Category Archives: Worship & Prayer

Light a Candle. Pray for the Nation.

November 7, 2016, Eve of Election Day

The congregations of the North Central Deanery invite the rest of the congregations of the diocese to join them in a commitment to light a candle and pray for the nation on November 7, the eve of Election Day.  Angst and anxiety have been building in our communities. Friends who share pews on Sunday are finding it harder and harder to relate if they lean toward different directions. We are a broken people. We have a faith that we can call upon and a tradition of common prayer that can lend words and voice to reach beyond to what we share in common, an election process, messy as it is, and a great Nation, messy as it is. 

Candles offer light and hope. They resist against darkness. We light candles in prayer. We welcome the incarnation on Christmas Eve by candlelight.  We hold up candles in homage when a concert touches our souls. We hold candlelight vigils in places made holy by an untimely death.  And, most importantly, we light a New Fire to explore the empty tomb on Easter morning.  If there is a symbol that unites the faithful, the spiritual but not religious, and the “nones,” it is probably a lighted candle.

Each congregation will offer an opportunity for prayer sometime during or through Monday, November 7. The times and formats will vary as what fits a congregation and its neighborhood the best.  For example, there are churches that will be open for meditation through the day with prayers and times to catch workers on their way home, a parking lot candlelight vigil, an Episcopal-Lutheran shared service, and a 24-hour chapel especially open for the dog walkers and runners that pass by. 

Our tradition of common prayer and especially our Book of Common Prayer are gifts we can freely share with those who are anxious and timid of political agendas or extemporaneous rhetoric. Let us make these events be a collective deep breath and voice offered as a way of loving our neighbors as ourselves before exercising our civil responsibility on Election Day.

Now, there are a few practical matters like promotion and media.  

  • “Light a Candle.  Pray for the Nation.” will be promoted across the diocesan web and social media, in addition to secular media.
  • There will be a virtual candlelight vigil on the www.Indydio.org web page and prayers offered at www.dailyoffice.org
  • Yard signs will be available at the diocesan convention for congregations to use if they have appropriate frontage.
  • For those who want to see the Episcopal Church in print media, we are hoping for a bold ad in the IndyStar that will list every congregation participating with time, place, and format. We need to raise money for the ad.  If you are moved to give, click here.  Or, you may send a check to the diocesan office marked for this purpose in the subject line.
  • We will have a template press release for any congregation to edit for their local media and information on local media contacts for those who need them.
  • We encourage each congregation to spread the word via its own media platforms, as well.  

This project is being planned as it unfolds. The coordinator for the NC Deanery is the Rev. Mary Slenski along with Kathy Copas, the diocesan coordinator for communication and evangelism.  Questions?  Please contact Mary+ at rev.maryslenski@gmail.com.  

IF YOUR CONGREGATION DECIDES TO PLAN A SPECIAL SERVICE, VIGIL, OR OTHER COMMEMORATION ACTIVITY, WE WOULD LIKE TO HEAR FROM YOU BY OCTOBER 8, SO THAT WE CAN INCLUDE YOUR PLANS IN OUR PUBLICITY.  

PLEASE SEND AN EMAIL TO rev.maryslenski@gmail.com and KathyCopas@aol.com WITH THE WORDS “NOVEMBER 7 PLANS” IN THE SUBJECT LINE. TELL US WHAT YOU PLAN TO OFFER, WHEN, AND ANY OTHER DETAILS IT WOULD BE IMPORTANT FOR PARTICIPANTS TO KNOW. 

Thank you for helping to share the gift of prayer throughout our diocese.  

Diocesan Cycle of Prayer

The Diocesan Cycle of Prayer keeps us connected with our wider community, both within the diocese and our partner diocese of Brasilia, as well as with the worldwide Anglican Communion, of which we are a part. We encourage you to use these resources in daily prayer and weekly worship. Please contact the diocesan office with any questions you may have.

For the Anglican Cycle of Prayer, click here.

Resources2015-2016 Cycle of Prayer2016-2017 Cycle of PrayerDownload

Weekly Remembrances

As a part of the Diocesan Cycle of Prayer, be sure to include in your weekly remembrances the people and Bishops of our companion dioceses:  The Most. Rev. Mauricio Andrade, Bishop of Brasilia, and the people and Diocese of Haiti and St. Andre’s in Mithon.

Prayer Resources

Prayer for the Wall around Bethlehem and all other barriers to come down.

Almighty God, Creator of the wonderful complex diversity of humanity; you have fashioned us in your image and commanded us to love one another; reach down your divine hand so that the wall shall come down in Bethlehem, the birthplace of your Son, the Prince of Peace; and may the crumbling walls herald the fall of all barriers that divide us. Bind us together so that love gives rise to an abundance of tenderness among all people; and may our hearts like Mary’s magnify the Lord, and may your love shower down throughout the world so all divisions are scattered and washed away. We ask this all with the expectant hearts through Christ Jesus, our Lord. Amen

Prison Ministry Sunday

Lord Christ, you said “I was in prison and you visited me…truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.” Help us to minister to God’s children behind bars, those returning to the community, and their families and victims knowing that you alone can change hearts and transform lives, and that together we might impact the world for good, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Episcopal Relief & Development

Almighty God, give to Episcopal Relief & Development the vision of Jesus whose compassion failed not, that following His example we may bring healing to this hurting world.

Grant that we may know who we must be as the arms and legs of Christ in the world today, so that we shall do what we are called to do in responding and making available resources of money, skills, and persons to alleviate poverty, famine, and disaster.

We thank you for the many generous souls who give of their abundance and pray that many others may join them in responding to the needs, hopes, and concerns of the world through Episcopal Relief & Development.

Set us at tasks to risk the Gospel in all places where you lead us, through Jesus Christ our Redeemer. Amen

Episcopal Fund for Human Need

Lord Jesus, you said, “Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.” We began the Episcopal Fund for Human Need to help those who fall through the cracks of human needs agencies throughout the Diocese of Indianapolis. Help us to be generous to serve as a lifeline to those who are hungry, homeless or poorly housed, without transportation, or ill and in need of assistance in Central and Southern Indiana that we might serve as a safety net and shine brightly that other may know you as the light of Christ in their lives as you are in ours, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

United Thank Offering

Heavenly Father, source of all creation, all love, all true joy; accept we pray these outward signs of our profound and continuing thankfulness for all of life. Bless those who will benefit from these gifts through the outreach of the United Thank Offering and keep each of us ever thankful for all the blessings of joy and challenge that come our way; through Him who is the greatest gift and blessing of all, Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior. Amen

Domestic Violence Awareness Month

God of peace, in mystery and silence you are present in our lives, bringing new life out of destruction, hope out of despair, growth out of difficulty. We pray for women, men, teens and children who live in fear of violence. For them, home is not a place of peace and love; it is a place of danger and pain. Give them strength to endure in the midst of powerlessness and confusion. And give us courage to confront abusers, whether in our community, family, or ourselves. We ask this in the name of the Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Clergy & Liturgy Resources: Same-Gender Relationships

rainbow ringsRevised edition of I Will Bless You and You Will Be a Blessing Expanded marriage rites available now

NEW YORK, November 23, 2015 — Church Publishing Incorporated has released a revised and expanded edition of marriage rites for all couples who wish to be married in The Episcopal Church. Liturgical Resources 1: I Will Bless You and You Will Be a Blessing, which has been authorized for trial use in Episcopal Church congregations beginning on the First Sunday in Advent—November 29, 2015—is now available.

This new volume is the result of the 2012 General Convention of The Episcopal Church commendation of Liturgical Resources 1: I Will Bless You and You Will Be a Blessing for study and use throughout The Episcopal Church. In the 2013–2015 triennium, the materials were widely used in a number of dioceses, and the Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music (SCLM) invited responses through several avenues.

On June 26, 2015, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled, “The Court, in this decision, holds same-sex couples may exercise the fundamental right to marry in all States. It follows that the Court must also hold—and it now does hold—that there is no lawful basis for a State to refuse to recognize a lawful same-sex marriage performed in another State on the ground of its same-sex character.”

Heeding the concern that “separate but equal” rites are inherently unequal, the Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music developed and recommended to the 2015 General Convention an adaptation of the 2012 liturgy that can be used for marriage for any couple, as well as The Celebration and Blessing of a Marriage 2, a gender-neutral adaptation of the marriage rite in the 1979 Book of Common Prayer. The Convention authorized these rites for trial use; that is, as a proposed revision of the Prayer Book. General Convention Resolution 2015-A054 directs that these liturgies be used under the direction and with the permission of the diocesan bishop, and stipulates that bishops exercising ecclesiastical authority or, where appropriate, ecclesiastical supervision, will make provision for all couples asking to be married in The Episcopal Church to have access to these liturgies.

The Rev. Dr. Ruth Meyers, Chair of the Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music from 2009–2015, Dean of Academics and the Hodges-Haynes Professor of Liturgics at the Church Divinity School of the Pacific, said, “I’m excited to have these resources for same-sex marriage available for use in The Episcopal Church. In preparing this material, the Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music listened carefully to responses to the resources for blessing same-sex relationships that were approved in 2012. An international and ecumenical consultation on same-sex marriage in June 2014 was especially helpful for the Commission’s understanding of the needs and concerns of many in our church.”

The Rev. Canon Dr. Michael Barlowe, Executive Officer of The Episcopal Church General Convention and Secretary of the Executive Council of The Episcopal Church and the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society, expressed his pleasure at the liturgies’ release, saying, “Discerning the movement of the Spirit is at the heart of what we do each General Convention. The prayer, experience, discussion, scholarship, and consultation embodied in I Will Bless You and You Will Be a Blessing is an outstanding example of this discernment, and I believe it will bless not only our church, but add blessing throughout God’s world as the Spirit continues to move.”

Resources

Daily Prayer for All Seasons

Daily Prayer for All Seasons is now available for free download on the website of The Episcopal Church.

Developed by the Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music and authorized by the 77th General Convention in 2012 (Resolution A055), the prayers in Daily Prayer for All Seasons are presented according to liturgical season beginning with Advent and progressing through Christmas, Epiphany, Lent, Holy Week, and Easter. In addition, two sections are offered for Ordinary Time: Creation and Rest.

In each, all prayers are grouped according to eight particular themes: praise, discernment, wisdom, perseverance and renewal, love, forgiveness, trust, and watch.

Download Here

Could Anglican Prayer Beads Be an Effective Spiritual Practice for You?

Anglican Prayer BeadsAnglican Prayer Beads: A Rosary for Episcopalians

Anglican Prayer Beads, also known as the Anglican Rosary, is a relatively new prayer form that is a blending of the Marian (Roman Catholic) Rosary and the Orthodox Jesus Prayer Rope. Since the earliest of times, people have used pebbles or a string of knots or beads on a cord to keep track of prayers offered to God.

Some form of a rosary, or prayer beads, has been found in virtually every major religious tradition in the world. The Anglican form of this rosary style prayer method came out of a contemplative prayer group that met in the mid 1980’s and was created by an Episcopal priest. Comprised of 33 beads, the number of years Our Lord walked this earth, it is well grounded in Incarnational theology and the symbolism contained in it points towards the Celtic view of the sanctity of all of God’s creation.

Learn more:

Music and Mission: The Dayspring Choirs Project

513m759HYeL._SL500_AA280_Purchase CD’s or Digital Downloads and Help Dayspring Center

Featuring music by the choirs of Holy Family, Fishers; Nativity, Indianapolis; St. Francis, Zionsville; and Trinity, Indianapolis.

All proceeds from sales of this celebration of music and mission will be used to provide emergency care, essentials, and support services to Indianapolis-area homeless families and children at Dayspring Center.

Purchase Options

    • Order digital downloads for $0.99 per track or $9.99 for the entire album.
    • CD featuring all 11 tracks (makes a great gift!) for $14 including shipping and handling. Use the Order Form below.C

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