Thursday, September 03, 2009

Sabeel Wave of Prayer

Each Thursday at noon in Jerusalem, Sabeel holds a Communion service that is open to the community. It is a time to join together to celebrate the Eucharist, to discuss how the scriptures apply to our lives today, and to pray for the specific needs of this region. Following the 2006 Sabeel International Conference, the Friends of Sabeel coordinators met and discussed the idea of "Waves of Prayer." The premise is that in their respective time zones, individuals and groups around the world will pray together at 12:00 on Thursdays, in solidarity with Sabeel in Jerusalem and with "Friends of Sabeel" worldwide. Starting in Australia, passing through Palestine, and on around the world we will pray for Peace with Justice and focus on specific issues each week.

Wave of Prayer for Thursday, September 3, 2009

In his final address to the Central Committee of the World Council of Churches, general secretary Rev. Samuel Kobia called Israel's occupation of the Palestinian territories a "sin against God." We are thankful for Kobia's strong public statement about the need for justice in Palestine/Israel. We pray for Kobia's successor, Rev. Dr. Olav Fykse Tveit. May he find the resources to meet the many challenges he will face.

On Tuesday morning, Israeli military forces entered Jalazoun Refugee Camp north of Ramallah. Using live ammunition, concussion grenades and tear gas, the military kidnapped several young men, injured three paramedics responding to the attack, and shot and killed Mohammad Riyadh Nayef (a 15 year old boy). We pray for Mohammad's family and the thousands of other Palestinian families affected by military incursions in the West Bank and Gaza each week. May God give them abundant strength, courage, and comfort.

This week in Jerusalem, Fr. Jean Nyembo (who is currently volunteering at Sabeel) will present the Sabeel community with a glimpse at life in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Nyembo will speak about how he hopes to use his experiences in Palestine to influence his home community and how to apply the lessons from this conflict to the conflict in the Congo. We pray for peace and justice in that land and pray that international solidarity will help bring new hope to the Congolese people.

Last Saturday, Sabeel staff joined with over two hundred Israeli peace activists in a candlelight vigil in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of Jerusalem. People gathered to demonstrate against the eviction of the al-Hanoun and al-Ghawi families. Settlers now occupy the homes with the approval of the government. We thank God for the support shown by so many Israelis and we pray that more Israelis will take action to end injustice in Israel and Palestine.

This week we join with the World Council of Churches in praying for:
Czech Republic, Poland, Slovakia

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