Sabeel Wave of Prayer: Week of Aug. 8, 2022

Sabeel Wave of Prayer: Week of Aug. 8, 2022

Next week, on Friday the 19th of August, Kumi Now will mark World Humanitarian Day. On this day we advocate for humanitarian aid workers and for all those affected by crises around the world. At the same time we call to mind the massive cuts in US humanitarian aid to Palestinians and for the suffering of refugees living in Gaza, Syria and the Lebanon now living in dire need.

•    Lord, we pray for an end to the Israeli occupation and for the right of return for all Palestinian refugees forced from their land. Lord, in your mercy…

Palestinian students have succeeded well in their Tawjihi high school general certificate examinations this summer. More than 85,300 students took the exam in the West Bank, Jerusalem and Gaza and there was an overall pass rate of over 68 per cent.

•    Lord, we are thankful for the determination of so many young Palestinians to focus on their education despite the difficult circumstances of growing up under Israeli occupation. We pray for these students as many will now seek work, while others pursue their studies. Lord, in your mercy…

After three days of fighting, Israel and Islamic Jihad have agreed to a ceasefire negotiated by Egypt. The death toll in Gaza reached 44, including 15 children, and 360 injured due to Israeli airstrikes.

·         Lord, we thank you for all the people involved in the negotiations to bring about the ceasefire and to deescalate the mounting violence. Lord, in your mercy… hear our prayers.

Nineteen families have left the herding community of Ras a Tin in Area C in the West Bank, with many of them relocating to Area B. The community was formerly made up of 35 households, comprising 250 people. It has been subjected to continual harassment from Israeli forces with frequent damage to their homes and livestock structures, as well as violent assaults from settlers, including a recent arson attack.

•    Lord, we pray for the Palestinian herding communities who are attacked by settlers and Israeli forces, making their lives intolerable. We pray for an end to the Israseli occupation so that these Palestinian herding communities can go back to their pastures. Lord, in your mercy..

Nuzhah ‘Afanah, a young Palestinian woman with a Palestinian Authority identity card was arrested on Wednesday, the 29th of June, when her husband was driving her and their two baby daughters in East Jerusalem. Under the Citizenship and Entry into Israel Law, (2003) Nuzhah is required to have a temporary permit to allow her to enter East Jerusalem, but these permits are rarely, if ever, granted. She was taken to the police station to be interrogated and then driven to Checkpoint 300 in southern Jerusalem and left there alone in the middle of the night. Relatives had to go and collect the young children and later go and rescue her.

•    Lord, we pray for an end to the discriminatory laws imposed on Palestinians by the Israeli authorities which prevent married couples  and their families from living together without the constant fear of separation. Lord, in your mercy..

Nabil Ghanum,(53), lived in Sara, a village near Nablus. On Sunday, the 19th of June, Nabil tried to cross through one of the gaps in the separation barrier near Qalqiliyah Checkpoint to enter Israel to work. As soon as he crossed the fence with some other Palestinian workers, Israeli soldiers fired at them. Nabil was shot and injured and later died of his wounds in an Israeli hospital. The B’Tselem report of this incident states that, ‘the opening of live fire against Palestinians seeking to work in Israel is unlawful and cannot be justified’.

•    Lord, we pray for the family of Nabil Ghanum as they grieve his loss. We pray for an end to the policy of using live fire to shoot Palestinians crossing the separation barrier to seek work in Israel. Lord, in your mercy…

Musicians Michele Cantoni and his wife Mathilde decided to move to Palestine and have dedicated their lives to supporting young Palestinians. They set up the Amwaj Choir in 2015, an Arabic name meaning waves. There are sixty choir members between the ages of 7-21 years. They come from cities, refugee camps and rural areas in the Bethlehem and Hebron area. Standards are high and the choir members are expected to rehearse for 6-8 hours each week.

•    Lord, we thank you for the gift of music and for the deep joy and fellowship inspired among the members of the Amwaj Choir. We pray for them as Michele and Mathilde Cantoni continue to train them for their proposed tour of Italy. Lord, in your mercy

The Ramallah-based Lawyers for Justice group have reported that 94 activists have been arrested by the Palestinian Authority over the past two months. This is one of the widest political arrest campaigns in years. Students and journalists have been among those arrested, but none have been charged with offences. Many were released after ten days in prison, but twenty remain in detention.

•    Lord, we pray that the Palestinian Authority and its security forces will stop arresting activists as a means of intimidating their critics and opponents. Lord, in your mercy…

•    We join with the World Council of Churches in their prayers for the countries of Cameroon, Central African Republic and Equatorial Guinea. Lord, in your mercy…