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, April 14, 2011
► We pray that a complete cease-fire and end to the blockade of Gaza will come out of the recent lull in the flare-up between Gaza and Israel which climaxed this past weekend in the deadliest three days since the war on Gaza in 2008-9, with 19 Palestinians killed and 120 mortars fired into southern Israel. We pray for an end to the cycle of violence that has caused so much pain and death in Gaza and fear and damage in Israel.
► As talks between Israel and Palestine continue to stall, we pray for a renewal of commitment from all parties to work for peace, in spite of actions that suggest otherwise such as the approval last week of the construction of 942 new housing units in Gilo, an illegal Israeli settlement on the edge of East Jerusalem in the West Bank. This comes as part of a series of recent announcements for new settlement construction, which is illegal under international law. In addition, the US postponed a Quartet meeting which was supposed to be held this Friday to discuss how to restart Israeli-Palestinian talks, saying "it wasn't the right time." We pray for now to be the time for peace.
► Our prayers continue to be with people everywhere challenging their governments to make reforms. We especially pray for the people of Syria as the month-long protest movement, which includes calls for an end to the 48 year old emergency law, continues to grow despite violent government crackdowns. May the courage it takes to protest strengthen across the Middle East and speak truth to those in power in a way that they will listen.
► We pray for the Holy Week and Easter programs: Sabeel Nazareth's children's Easter Program at the Carmelite Convent on Tuesday, April 12; the Nazareth Young Adult's special Easter Bible Study and dinner on Thursday, April 14; and the Easter Egg Hunt and games for 140 children from disadvantaged families in Jerusalem and Bethlehem co-organized by Sabeel Jerusalem and the Catholic Scouts on Friday, April 15.
With the Prayer Cycle of the World Council of Churches, we pray for:
Japan, South Korea, North Korea, Taiwan