Meditations on the Lord’s Prayer

I think one thing is that prayer has become more useful, interesting, fruitful, and … almost involuntary in my life … And when I talk about prayer, I mean really … what Rumi says in that wonderful line, “there are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground”. — Mary Oliver

Do not pray for easy lives. Pray to be stronger men” — John F. Kennedy

In prayer it is better to have a heart without words than words without a heart. — John Bunyan

Prayer is simply a two-way conversation between you and God. — Billy Graham

SONGS about prayer:

Renditions of The Lord’s Prayer:

RESOURCES about the LORD’s PRAYER;

WHAT WE NEED IS HERE— Wendell Berry
Geese appear high over us,
pass, and the sky closes. Abandon,
as in love or sleep, holds
them to their way, clear
in the ancient faith: what we need
is here. And we pray, not
for new earth or heaven, but to be
quiet in heart, and in eye,
clear. What we need is here.

Thoughts on Prayer

For prayer is nothing else than being on terms of friendship with God. — Saint Teresa of Avila

Exercise, prayer, and meditation are examples of calming rituals. They have been shown to induce a happier mood and provide a positive pathway through life’s daily frustrations. — Chuck Norris

Prayer does not change God, but it changes him who prays. — Soren Kierkegaard

I do not know much about God and prayer, but I have come to believe, over the past twenty-five years, that there’s something to be said about keeping prayer simple. Help. Thanks. Wow. … You may in fact be wondering what I even mean when I use the word “prayer.” … Prayer is private, even when we pray with others. It is communication from the heart to that which surpasses understanding. Let’s say it is communication from one’s heart to God. Or … to the Good, the force that is beyond our comprehension but that in our pain or supplication or relief we don’t need to define or have proof of or any established contact with. Let’s say it is what the Greeks called the Really Real, what lies within us, beyond the scrim of our values, positions, convictions, and wounds. Or let’s say it is a cry from deep within to Life or Love, with capital L’s … … Prayer means that, in some unique way, we believe we’re invited into a relationship with someone who hears us when we speak in silence. — Anne Lamott

You carry Mother Earth within you. She is not outside of you. Mother Earth is not just your environment. In that insight of inter-being, it is possible to have real communication with the Earth, which is the highest form of prayer. — Thich Nhat Hanh

I am bewildered by the magnificence of your beauty; and wish to see you with a hundred eyes . . . I am in the house of mercy, and my heart is a place of prayer. — Rumi

A PRAYER FOR YOUR WILD SOUL — John O’Donohue 
Give yourself time to make a prayer
that will become the prayer of your soul.
Listen to the voices of longing in your soul.
Listen to your hungers.
Give attention to the unexpected
that lives around the rim of your life.
Listen to your memory and to the inrush of your future,
to the voices of those near you and those you have lost.
Out of all of that attention to your soul,
make a prayer that is big enough for your wild soul,
yet tender enough for your shy and awkward vulnerability;
that has enough healing to gain the ointment of divine
forgiveness for your wounds; enough truth and vigour
to challenge your blindness and complacency;
enough graciousness and vision to mirror your immortal beauty.
Write a prayer that is worthy of the destiny to which you have been called.

ORD’s PRAYER Commentary

The Lord’s Prayer has a central place in Christian worship. The plural “our” is used throughout, so that those giving voice to the prayer acknowledge both the presence of God and their connection to a wider praying community. The first three petitions focus the worshipers’ attention on God. The remaining petitions turn to “our” needs, asking God to help all of “us.” — Craig Koester

The Lord’s Prayer (the Our Father) appears in the Gospels of Matthew and Luke. We pray the expanded version from Matthew 6:9-13. It is part of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, in which Jesus summarizes his proclamation of the gospel, or Good News. In the same way, the Lord’s Prayer is at the heart of this sermon because it can be said to summarize the whole gospel.
       With this prayer, we enter into communion with the Father and with Jesus, who has revealed him to us. Praying this prayer helps us to develop the will to become as humble and trusting as Jesus.
       In the Lord’s Prayer, we praise and glorify God and petition for what we need. There are seven petitions. The first three are addressed to God and draw us to him for his own sake: thy name, thy kingdom, thy will! The last four concern us and our needs that the Father fulfills: give us, forgive us, lead us not, deliver us. — Loyola Press

Initial words on the topic from the Catechism of the Catholic Church teach that it “is truly the summary of the whole gospel”. The prayer is used by most Christian denominations in their worship and with few exceptions, the liturgical form is the version from the gospel of Matthew. Protestants usually conclude the prayer with a doxology (in some versions, “For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, for ever and ever, Amen”), a later addition appearing in some manuscripts of Matthew. Although theological differences and various modes of worship divide Christians, … there is a sense of solidarity in knowing that Christians around the globe are praying together … and these words always unite us. — wikipedia.com

Sun, Jan 15 – Rev Dr Martin Luther King Jr Weekend

  • INTERFAITH GATHERING
    8am • Old Red Library or zoom link (password required)
    • Join us for poetry, conversation, and prayer.
  • WORSHIP including Martin Luther King Jr Observance
    10:30am • JCC  & in-person
    • Zoom link (password required)
    • Reflection: rev Gail Doktor
    • Flute: Jeanette Heidmann
    • Music Sharon Novak
  • Community Event: SNOW SHOE Tour
    2pm • Tin M tn Conservation Ctr, Albany, NH
    • Join us for a snowshoe tour at Tin Mountain’s Nature Learning Center in Albany, NH. Bring your own snowshoes or rent ours*, and enjoy the breathtaking beauty of winter. All are welcome!
    • Non-members:  $15/person or $25/household, snowshoe rental $5/person. Members are Free!
    • Register at tinmountain.org or call 603-447-6991
      *Please arrive at 1:30pm if you are renting snowshoes. Also, bring poles if you prefer to use them while snowshoeing – we do not have any poles.
  • Community Event: XC SKIING & SNOWSHOEING with Jackson Ski Touring
    Trails Open • More info: https://www.jacksonxc.org/trail-report/
  • Community Event: SLEIGH RIDES & SKATING
    Nestlenook Farm, Jackson, NH • More info: https://nestlenookfarmsleighrides.com/
  • Community Event: DOWNHILL SKIING
  • Community Events: MUSIC AROUND TOWN
    • Lostbo Pub @ Black Mountain: Steve Haidaichuk • 3:30-5:30pm
    • Shannon Door: Dan Parkhurst & Rafe • 6-9pm
    • Red Parka Pub: Now Is Now • 8-11pm
    • Shovel Handle Pub: Al Shafner •  5:30-8:30pm

Honoring the Life of Esmae Doucette

Esmae Doucette

DONATIONS honoring Esmae Doucette

SERVICE in memory of ESMAE DOUCETTE
Sat, Dec. 17

2pm • Service at Jackson Community Church (zoom available upon request: email requests for zoom link will be monitored through noon of Sat, Dec 17)
3-5pm •  Reception at Ledge Brewing

Bio released to the Conway Daily Sun: 

“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and go do that, because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” — Howard Thurman

Esmae Arabella Doucette passed from this life peacefully on Dec. 2, 2022. She was surrounded by her parents, five siblings and grandmother holding her in love and light.

Esmae was born Feb. 25, 1999, at home in Jackson, N.H. She was the fourth child of six. Imaginative and creative, she was a true child of Jackson, who enjoyed swimming in the Wildcat and Ellis rivers, hiking, exploring the Nordic trails and many beautiful bluebird days skiing at Black Mountain. Her early childhood, surrounded by natural beauty, formed in her a deep and lasting commitment to the environment and conservation of the Earth’s wild places.

She attended the Lilliputian Montessori Preschool and then the Jackson Grammar School, where she developed a love of reading and storytelling, played soccer, and skied. During these golden years, she formed forever friendships with Nina, Abby, Logan, Eliza and Ari. She spent several years participating in Girl Scouts and the Bill Koch Youth Ski League. She was awarded the DAR Good Citizen award as a graduating sixth grader. During the summers, Esmae attended Tin Mountain Camp and Camp Nokomis on Bear Island, Lake Winnipesaukee.

She went on to Josiah Bartlett Elementary School and Kennett High School where she met lifelong friends, Rachel and Jasmine. There she excelled in academics and was a National Honor Society member.

Esmae was a member of Key Club International and was elected the vice president of her class and served as student council representative to the school board, collaborating on environmental issues to improve conditions at the school. Esmae was on the soccer team, mountain bike team and ski teams. She competed in all three ski disciplines: Nordic, alpine and jumping, to tie with her friend for the Skimeister title.

Esmae was employed by Dutch Bloemen Winkle in Jackson, Moat Mountain Smokehouse and Tuckerman’s Tavern in Intervale, the Red Fox Bar & Grille in Jackson and as a camp counselor for Tin Mountain Conservation Center.

Esmae graduated early and took time before her graduation ceremony with her classmates to work and play and attended a memorable trip to France with her French class.

After graduation, she took some time to discover and develop her goals. She spent a summer in Bath, Maine, living next to the ocean she so loved and exploring the coastline.

From there she moved to Savannah, Ga., to spend time with her older sister, Isabelle, and interned at the Tybee Island Marine Research Center. Esmae loved her caretaking responsibilities for the creatures there, cementing her resolve to study Marine Biology. She went on to study at Stony Brook University and Southern New Hampshire University.

Always an avid reader, Esmae frequented all three of the valley’s libraries and was never without a good book. Much of her free time was spent rambling on the many trails in our gorgeous White Mountains, bagging peaks with her friends, sisters and beloved dog Layla. Countless mornings her parents would be enjoying their first cups of coffee as she would just be returning from a sunrise hike, cheeks flush and enthusiastically sharing her observations of the woods, mountains, and animals.

Anyone who was lucky enough to meet Esmae was greeted by her huge smile and quickly enamored with her infectious laugh. Gifted at making others feel at ease, she had a warmth and generosity of spirit that she used to make people feel good about themselves.

She cared deeply for and was fiercely protective of her friends and siblings, showing up for them in good and difficult times. If you were fortunate enough to be called her friend, it was for life.

As a way to show her affection, she often toiled for hours making homemade gifts full of inspirational passages elaborately decorated by her own hand. As her final act of generosity, selflessness and love, Esmae was an organ donor, giving the gift of life to three others.

Esmae is survived by her loving parents, Sean and Heath Doucette of Jackson; her sisters, Charlotte Doucette of North Conway, N.H.; Madison Doucette of Intervale, N.H.; Isabelle Doucette of Intervale; Sabine Doucette of Jackson; and brother Stash Doucette of Jackson; grandmother Catherine Nash of Conway, N.H.; aunt and uncle, Rachel and Brendan Moses; and cousins, Julia and Owen Moses of Bar Harbor, Maine.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in Esmae’s memory to Tin Mountain Conservation Center, Starting Point Services, New England Donor Services or an environmental conservation group of your choice.

Please join us in celebrating the life of Esmae on Saturday, Dec. 17. A memorial service will begin at 2 p.m. at the Jackson Community Church followed by a celebration of life at the Ledge Brewing Co. in Intervale from 3 to 6 p.m. with Riley Parkhurst on stage. We will be gathering to share our memories and stories, to laugh, to cry and to remember the beautiful spirit of Esmae.

Fri, Nov 11 @ 5pm – C3: COCKTAILS & CHRISTIAN CONVERSATIONS 

Zoom link required.

Bring your adult beverage and your curiosity for a conversation about our sacred texts.

Introductory video by BibleProject about Esther: https://bibleproject.com/blog/esther-secular-sacred/ The text is provided below.

Excerpts from Esther

Esther 2

After these things, when the anger of King Ahasuerus had abated, he remembered Vashti and what she had done and what had been decreed against her. Then the king’s servants who attended him said, “Let beautiful young [women] be sought out for the king. … And let the young woman who pleases the king be queen instead of Vashti.” This pleased the king, and he did so.

Esther 2:15-17

When the turn came for Esther daughter of Abihail the uncle of Mordecai, who had adopted her as his own daughter, to go in to the king, she asked for nothing except what Hegai the king’s eunuch, who had charge of the women, advised. Now Esther was admired by all who saw her. When Esther was taken to King Ahasuerus [Xerxes I] in his royal palace … the king loved Esther more than all the other women; of all the virgins she won his favor and devotion, so that he set the royal crown on her head and made her queen instead of Vashti.

Esther 3:5-6

When Haman saw that Mordecai did not bow down or do obeisance to him, Haman was infuriated. But he thought it beneath him to kill only Mordecai. So, having been told who Mordecai’s people were, Haman plotted to destroy all the Jews, the people of Mordecai, throughout the whole kingdom of Ahasuerus.Esther 4:13-16

Mordecai told them to reply to Esther, “Do not think that in the king’s palace you will escape any more than all the other Jews. For if you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance will rise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. Who knows? Perhaps you have come to royal dignity for just such a time as this.”
Then Esther said in reply to Mordecai, “Go, gather all the Jews to be found in Susa, and hold a fast on my behalf, and neither eat nor drink for three days, night or day. I and my maids will also fast as you do. After that I will go to the king, though it is against the law, and if I perish, I perish.”

Esther 5:2

As soon as the king saw Queen Esther standing in the court, she won his favor, and he held out to her the golden scepter that was in his hand. Then Esther approached and touched the top of the scepter.

Esther 6:13

 When Haman told his wife Zeresh and all his friends everything that had happened to him, his advisers and his wife Zeresh said to him, “If Mordecai, before whom your downfall has begun, is of the Jewish people, you will not prevail against him but will surely fall before him.”

Esther 7:3

Then Queen Esther answered, “If I have won your favor, O king, and if it pleases the king, let my life be given me—that is my petition—and the lives of my people—that is my request.

Esther 8:17

In every province and in every city, wherever the king’s command and his edict came, there was gladness and joy among the Jews, a festival and a holiday.

C3: COCKTAILS & CHRISTIAN CONVERSATIONS
will not meet this Fri, Nov 4

Instead, it will resume on Fri, Nov 11 @ 5pm
Meanwhile, if you wish to read the texts to be discussed on Sun, Nov 6, please see below.


C3: COCKTAILS & CHRISTIAN CONVERSATIONS 

  • Bring your adult beverage and your curiosity for a conversation about our sacred texts.
  • Introductory video by BibleProject for Luke about the upside down kingdom as a theme: https://bibleproject.com/explore/video/luke-1-9/
  • The text is provided below

Excerpts from Isaiah, Luke, Acts & Letter to Philippians about the Upside Down Kingdom

Isaiah 53: 12
Because he poured out himself to death
 and was numbered with the transgressors.
 
Luke 4: 16-22 (citing Isaiah 61: 1-2)
When he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, he went to the synagogue on the Sabbath day, as was his custom. He stood up to read, and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written:
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
    because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives
    and recovery of sight to the blind, to set free those who are oppressed, 
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”

And he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down. The eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. Then he began to say to them, “Today this scripture has been fulfilled in
your hearing.”


Philippians 2: 5- 8
Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus,
who, though he existed in the form of God,
did not regard equality with God as something to be grasped,
but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, 
assuming human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a human, 
he humbled himself and became obedient
to the point of death—
even death on a cross.
 
Acts 17: 6-7
“These people who have been turning the world upside down have come here also, and Jason has entertained them as guests. They are all acting contrary to the decrees of the emperor, saying that there is another king named Jesus.”

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