The ‘Great March of Return’ protest in Gaza continued for its 42nd Friday. A Palestinian woman, Amal Mustafa Taramsi and 14-year-old Abed Alraouf Salhah died and at least 25 other people were wounded by Israeli live fire. Egyptian representatives held talks on the day before with Palestinian delegates to prevent any further escalation of violence along the border with Israel.
Lord, we pray for the family of Amal and Abed who were killed in the protest as they mourn their loss. We pray too for a breakthrough in the peace talks that there will be an end to the blockade of Gaza and to the desperate sufferings of the people under siege. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayers.
This week the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, (PSC), successfully challenged a UK court ruling. The ruling would have restricted local authority pension funds’ ability to divest from companies on ethical grounds. If the PSC is successful in its appeal to the Supreme Court, the UK Government will not be able to interfere on ethical disinvestment decisions.
Lord our God help us to seek you diligently and to walk in your way of righteousness and your paths of justice (Proverbs 8:17-20). We are thankful for those who listen to the Palestinian cry for justice and who seek to find ways to peacefully protest Israel’s human rights violations in Palestine. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayers.
A general strike has been called for Palestinians on Tuesday, the 15th of January. On this date the Palestinian Authority requires business owners and employees in the private sector to sign up to the Palestinian Social Security Institution. This institution has been set up to provide pensions and insurance benefits. However, many protestors are mistrustful of the Palestinian Authority and its intentions.
Dear Lord, we pray that the general strike will be peaceable and that the grievances of the protestors will be addressed by the authorities concerned. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayers.
Thousands of Palestinian and Syrian refugees in the Middle East are suffering from severe wintry weather conditions. Storm Norma which started on Saturday, the 12th of January, hit Lebanon and Syria this week with heavy rains, snowfall and freezing temperatures. Many refugees had to be rescued from flooded camps.
Lord, you knew what it was like to live as a refugee when you were born into this world. Help us to remember the refugee families who have to try and survive extreme cold in temporary shelters. We give thanks to all charities and NGOs who respond to their suffering with emergency shelter, fuel and food supplies. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayers.
In the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of occupied East Jerusalem, five Palestinian families have received an order by the Israeli authorities to evacuate a building. According to the Civic Coalition for Palestinian Rights in Jerusalem (CCPRJ), the building would be turned over to Israeli settlers who had claimed ownership of the building.
Lord, we pray for an end to the Israeli military occupation that continues to dispossess our people from their properties. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayers
This week’s Kumi Action focuses on the work of the Machsom Watch. Since 2001 Israeli women from the Machsom Watch have been observing and reporting on the Israeli military occupation of Palestine. They are opposed to the occupation and believe it is undermining respect for human rights and democracy in Israel. The Kumi Action asks you to stop and think as you cross a road or leave a building what it must be like for Palestinians who have to pass through so many obstacles just to reach work or school or treatment at a hospital.
Lord, we thank you for those who care about human rights and for those, like the women of Machsom Watch, who are prepared to monitor and report on the injustices they see in their society. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayers.
We join with the World Council of Churches in their prayers for the countries of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Yemen. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayers.