Lectionary Selection: Luke 4:14-21
Prayers for Israel/Palestine
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
Let us hold a high standard for the world we want to see, one in amity and armistice; goodwill and harmony.
Oh how beautiful is peace... But where is peace?
Let us be firm in fairness and reason so that those who were wronged can feel its righteousness. Let us find ways to bring us closer to reconciliation.
Oh how beautiful is justice... But where is justice?
Let us rise up, and seek the answers to reunite shattered families and broken friendships… To give a chance for the world around us to live in company and love.
Oh how beautiful is freedom... But where is freedom?
Let us proclaim good news to the poor, to the prisoners, to the blind, to the angry, to the scared, and to the free that this is the year of the Lord’s favor… A year wrapped in hope.
Oh how beautiful is hope… Hope is here.
Stewardship Moment from Israel/Palestine
Since the first of October, Palestine has been stepping into a new era of popular uprisings and violence. Some have taken to calling it the Third Intifada. Some have taken to calling it “terrorism”. Whatever one decides to call it, there is no doubt that something is happening that will change life in Palestine for some time to come. Acts of desperation against years of pain and injustice have led to a clamp down on life. This has lead to more bullets, more gas, and more collective punishment. At the same moment, all of this is slipping into the background. There has been more bad news in the past few months than many can handle. In many parts of the world fear has settled deep into all aspects of life. From small interactions amid people to future government policy, fear and ignorance is brewing hate. Between the headline grabbing attacks and inflammatory statements of politicians, it is easy to see how the plight of Palestine has slipped out of consciousness. But it is still here, and it is growing every day.
As mothers, fathers, children, siblings, and friends are shot, beaten, and arrested everyday, there is a lot of work to do to hold society together. The East Jerusalem YMCA and YWCA have continued in offering what they can through trauma workshops, rehabilitation, and recreation days for kids. All of these reminders that through the pain and violence, life still has a chance. Peace is beautiful. Justice is beautiful. And so is freedom. But they are scarce here. At least there is still hope here, and hope has power to bring all of these beauties to life.
(Prayer and Stewardship Moment by Nate Bailey)
Partners in Israel/Palestine:
- Christmas Lutheran Church in Bethlehem
- Diyar Consortium
- East Jerusalem YMCA (Palestine)
- Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel (EAPPI
- Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem
- Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land
- Friends Meeting in Ramallah
- Kairos Palestine
- Rawdat el-Zuhur (Palestine)
- Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Center (Jerusalem)
- Tantur Ecumenical Institute
- YWCA of Palestine (Palestine)
More information on Israel/Palestine: http://www.globalministries.org/israel_palestine
Global Ministries in Israel/Palestine
Nate Bailey served as a Global Mission Intern with the YMCA and the Joint Advocacy Initiative in Beit Sahour, Palestine. His appointment was supported by Week of Compasssion, Our Churches Wider Mission, Disciples Mission Fund and your special gifts.