Thursday, February 17, 2011

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, February 17, 2011

We give thanks for the example of successful nonviolent resistance the people of Egypt give to the world with the stepping down of President Mubarak on Friday and pray for a smooth and meaningful transition to democracy. Our prayers are also with the people who continue in their struggles for more freedom in Algeria, Bahrain, Iran, Iraq, Palestine, Yemen, and other places around the world.

As the new PA Cabinet is being formed, we pray for Palestinian unity and a democratic government to govern a future Palestinian state when the occupation ends.

Our prayers for safety and wellbeing are with the international and local travelers and pilgrims to Bethlehem for Sabeel's 8th International Conference, Challenging Empire: God, Faithfulness and Resistance. We continue to pray for the participants, speakers, organizers, staff and volunteers as everyone prepares in the last days before the conference.

Please continue to pray next week for the Conference, which takes place in Bethlehem from February 23-28, 2011: for open hearts and minds for the participants, wisdom and clarity for the speakers, and strength and patience for the organizers, staff and volunteers.

With the Prayer Cycle of the World Council of Churches, we pray for:

This week: Italy, Malta, Portugal, Spain

Next week: France, Germany

Wave of Prayer for Thursday, February 10, 2011

We pray for all those affected by the recent increase of illegal settlement construction in East Jerusalem. Last week several Israeli Knesset members, Jerusalem councilmen, and former Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee attended the cornerstone-laying ceremony for settler housing units on the Mount of Olives, with intentions for further expansion. This week the Jerusalem City Council approved the plans for settler apartments in Sheikh Jarrah whose construction will cause the eviction of a number of Palestinian families. We pray that the national and international community will not let this settlement construction that is illegal under international law and destructive for peace go unheeded.

Prices of essential items such as food, water and gas are steadily increasing in Israel and Palestine, the Middle East, and all over the world. We pray for everyone for whom this is a hardship, especially for those who already struggle to make ends meet and for whom this is an additional burden.

Our prayers remain with the people of Egypt; we especially give thanks for the Christians and Muslims working together for a better nation and protecting each other during Muslim prayers and Christian services. May they be encouraged and strengthened, and continue to give inspiration and hope across the Middle East.

We pray for the upcoming Sabeel conference, Challenging Empire: God, Faithfulness, and Resistance, that is now less than two weeks away. We remember the people from Africa and Latin America who were unable to get visas to join us for the conference. We also give thanks for the international volunteers who have arrived in Jerusalem and for the affirming atmosphere of teamwork among all the staff preparing for the conference.

With the Prayer Cycle of the World Council of Churches, we pray for:

Belgium, Luxembourg, Netherlands

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