Prayers of the People - 2nd Sunday in Advent - Year C - December 6th, 2015

Prayers of the People

2nd Sunday in Advent - Year C

December 6th, 2015

Here's a Prayers of the People for the 2nd Sunday in Advent (Year C), December 6th, 2015.  Inspired by Baruch 5:1-9.

God of all Grace and Peace,
as we continue this advent journey,
we come to you in all honesty and courage
to lift up to you our souls that we might be heard
and your good works proclaimed.

We pray to you especially this day for those who find this season difficult,
for those for whom "'tis the season" rings empty in broken hearts,
for those who have lost loved ones and for those whose loved ones suffer.

We pray to you for those, like Joseph and Mary, who are social outcasts.
We acknowledge that we often do not recognize many in this world
     because they don't look like us,
     because they don't have money like us,
     because they don't act like us,
     because they don't believe like us.
We ask your help to acknowledge the humanity in all persons
so that, unlike Joseph and Mary, they might have a place to stay,
a place to call home, a place to spend the night.

We pray for pastors, choir directors, church workers, 
and all others for whom this is not always a season of sabbath,
but a season of increased work.
May the work they do be blessed and be given as an offering to your holy name.

We pray for those who suffer from physical and mental illnesses,
for those who suffer from depression, PTSD, schizophrenia, and bi-polar disorder,
for those who have been diagnosed with cancer and other ailments,
for those whose physical disabilities keep them isolated from others.

We pray for those who need your light the most.
We pray especially for those in our hearts,
which we name before you in silence or out loud...

In all goodness and mercy,
hear our prayers this day, O Lord,
and remember your promise to keep us and to save us.

Through the reign of your Son, and the power of your Holy Spirit,
lead us with joy, in the light of your glory, 
with the mercy and righteousness that comes only from you.  Amen.

Permission is given for use in congregational worship.  Please give the following credit:  "Written by Rev. Stephen M. Fearing -"


Stephen Fearing

Stephen was born in 1988 in Cookeville, TN, where his parents met whilst attending Tennessee Tech. Shortly after, they moved to Dalton, Georgia where they put down roots and joined First Presbyterian Church, the faith family that taught Stephen that he was first and foremost a beloved child of God. It was this community that taught Stephen that it was OK to have questions and doubts and that nothing he could do could every possibly separate him from the love of God. In 1995, his sister, Sarah Kate, joined the family and Stephen began his journey as a life-long musician. Since then, he has found a love of music and has found this gift particularly fitting for his call to ministry. Among the instruments that he enjoys are piano, trumpet, guitar, and handbells. Stephen has always had a love of singing and congregation song. An avid member of the marching band, Stephen was the drum major of his high school's marching band. In 2006, Stephen began his tenure at Presbyterian College in Clinton, SC where he majored in Religion and minored in History. While attending PC, Stephen continued to explore his love of music by participating in the Wind Ensemble, Jazz Band, Jazz Combo, Jazz Trio, as well as playing in the PC Handbell ensemble and playing mandolin and banjo PC's very own bluegrass/rock group, Hosegrass, of which Stephen was a founding member (Hosegrass even released their own CD!). In 2010, Stephen moved from Clinton to Atlanta to attend Columbia Theological Seminary to pursue God's call on his life to be a pastor in the PC(USA). During this time, Stephen worked at Trinity Presbyterian Church, Silver Creek Presbyterian Church, Central Presbyterian Church, and Westminster Presbyterian Church. For three years, Stephen served as the Choir Director of Columbia Theological Seminary's choir and also served as the Interim Music Director at Westminster Presbyterian Church. In 2014, Stephen graduated from Columbia with a Masters of Divinity and a Masters of Arts in Practical Theology with an emphasis in liturgy, music, and worship. In July of 2014, Stephen was installed an ordained as Teaching Elder at Shelter Island Presbyterian Church in Shelter Island, NY. Later that year, Stephen married the love of his life, Tricia, and they share their home on Shelter Island with their Golden Doodle, Elsie, and their calico cat, Audrey. In addition to his work with the people who are Shelter Island Presbyterian Church, Stephen currently serves as a commission from Long Island Presbytery to the Synod of the Northeast and, beginning in January of 2016, will moderate the Synod's missions team.