Sabeel Wave of Prayer: Week of Feb. 7, 2022
Amnesty International launched its most recent report, entitled ‘Israel’s apartheid against Palestine’ on Tuesday, the 1st of February in occupied East Jerusalem. The report concludes that the Israeli occupation state has imposed a ‘cruel system of domination and has committed crimes against humanity’. Fourteen Israeli NGOs and human rights’ groups have signed a statement in support of the Amnesty International report and expressed their concern over an attack against the report by the Israeli government which accuses it of being antisemitic.
- Lord, we pray that the Israeli government will put an end to its discriminatory practices against Palestinians. We pray that it will stop avoiding debate over oppressive policies by accusing any critics of being antisemitic. Lord in your mercy…hear our prayers.
The Rawajba family have spent the last fourteen months trying to establish what has happened to their son. They do not know if he is alive or dead and they are worn down with suffering. Their son, Bilal was wounded by the Israeli army when he drove by Huwara, an army checkpoint near Nablus. He was reported to have been injured and airlifted to an unnamed hospital in Tel Aviv. At one point the family were contacted to let them know he had died, but they were later told he was still receiving treatment.
- Lord, we pray for the Rawajba family, not knowing the fate of their son and unable to establish his whereabouts. We pray that the Israeli army will give clear statements to Palestinian families about their relatives and not cause such turmoil and suffering. Lord in your mercy…hear our prayers.
The scenes of Syrian refugees struggling to survive in wintry conditions moved Ibraheem Khalil and his friend Jabr Hijaz to launch an online campaign to raise funds for the work of relief organizations building houses for them in Syria, Jordan and Turkey. They have raised more than 10 million shekels in relief funds from Palestinians living in Arab cities in Israel.
- Lord, we thank you for the inspiration of Ibraheem and Jabr as they work to ease the plight of refugees suffering in the cold winter months. May our hearts be moved with compassion when we see the suffering of those afflicted by war and calamity. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayers.
On Saturday, the 29th of January, Episcopalians from the Washington D.C. area adopted resolutions, (3 to 1), to oppose the Israeli apartheid, to confront Christian Zionism and to defend the right to boycott as a legitimate form of protest.
- Lord, we pray that the worldwide church, made up of many denominations, will finally turn its eyes to Palestine and, in the words of the late Archbishop Tutu, ‘liberate the Israelis themselves, as well as the Palestinians from the traumatic burden of apartheid’. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayers.
This week five Palestinian NGOs, supported by Israeli human rights’ NGOs, made a formal request that the IDF Legal Advisor from the West Bank reverse his declaration, made in October 2021, that they were ‘unlawful associations’. A sixth group is not part of the latest legal challenge. The Palestinian NGOs have long established records of working to support the human rights of Palestinians living under Israeli occupation, and have worked in partnership with the UN and the global human rights’ community. The IDF has stated that it will not produce evidence against the groups as it is based on classified intelligence.
- Lord, we pray for all the members of the Palestinian NGOs and the wider community they serve. We pray that they may receive a fair hearing in the Israeli court system to re-establish their reputations and that any defamation may be exposed. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayers.
The Citizenship and Entry into Israel Law, first passed in 2003, makes inhabitants of the West Bank and Gaza ineligible for the granting of Israeli citizenship and residency permits that are usually available through marriage to other Israeli citizens. Palestinians living in East Jerusalem pay a particularly heavy price for this law, often denied unification rights with members of their family. Some Palestinian families have recently been granted residency permits, but many thousands are still denied the right to live with their own family members.
- Lord, we are thankful that some Palestinian families have been granted the right to reunite. We continue to pray for those Palestinians forced to live apart from one another or to risk living together without legal rights under these discriminatory Israeli laws. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayers.
A US District Court judge has blocked the State of Texas from enforcing its Anti-Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Law against a Palestinian-American contractor who refused to sign a pledge not to boycott Israel. The judge stated that this law infringed Rasmy Hassounas’ First Amendment rights. A number of US states have recently introduced legislation to prevent citizens from participating in any economic boycott of Israel and from any expression of support for Palestinians on the grounds of antisemitism.
- Lord, we thank you that men like Rasmy are still prepared to stand up for Palestinians and to protest peacefully against the Israeli occupation of Palestine, even at a cost to their livelihood and their reputation. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayers.
- We join with the World Council of Churches in their prayers for the countries of Andorra, Italy, Malta, Portugal, San Marino, Spain and Vatican City. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayers.