Sabeel Wave of Prayer: Week of July 6, 2020

Sabeel_logo_small.pngBenjamin Netanyahu’s self-imposed date for annexation of July 1st has come and gone with no changes on the ground. During this time numerous voices from the international community, Palestinian groups, and Israelis have come together to call for the prospect of further annexation of the West Bank to cease.

Lord, we pray that international powers will apply real pressure to the Israeli government and their supporters in the United States to bring an end to the prospect of further illegal annexation of the West Bank. We pray that Palestinians living in the areas under threat will have this threat removed and be able to live in peace. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayer.

 

Kumi-Logo-01-e1536789062138.pngIn Week 38 of the Kumi Now Initiative (Tuesday 7th July) the topic of Morally Responsible Investing was discussed with Sabeel-Kairos UK. On Tuesday 14th July there will be the opportunity to listen to the Israeli NGO Zochrot on the topic of Right of Return and the Jewish National Fund.

Dear Lord, we thank you for those who are willing to express their support for the legitimate struggle for justice and peace through their financial investments. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayer.

As Covid19 continues to affect populations throughout the world, we see a further rise in cases in both Palestine and Israel. With around 1000 cases daily, Israel is at a peak higher than that seen at the beginning of the pandemic with lockdowns and restrictions starting to be reintroduced. The West Bank was locked down from Friday 3rd July for a period of five days, but this may be extended as hundreds of cases are reported in the Hebron area and in the refugee camps of Bethlehem.

Lord, we pray for all those around the world who are affected by this pandemic, especially for the medical and emergency services who continue to place themselves at great risk to treat the sickest patients. We pray for those in the West Bank under lockdown as they once again adjust to an even more restricted way of life under continuing occupation. Lord in your mercy…hear our prayer.

Despite the ongoing Covid19 pandemic and increase in cases, Israeli occupation authorities have begun construction of almost 200 new housing units in the illegal Israeli settlement of Neve Daniel. These new housing units are being built on land belonging to the Palestinian villages of Nahalin and al-Khader. Throughout the pandemic, Israeli occupation forces and settler groups have used restrictions and lock downs to seize more land for settlement expansion.

O Lord, we see the destruction of livelihoods and homes continue as Palestinians suffer under the combined hardships of occupation, restrictions and lockdown. We pray that justice will prevail and that, one day, Palestinians will be able to live peaceably on their own land and in their own homes without the threat of demolition or forced displacement.

Five Israeli and Palestinian human rights organizations (Gisha, Adalah, HaMoked, Physicians for Human Rights Israel, and the Association for Civil Rights in Israel) have sent an urgent letter to Defence Minister Benny Gantz, Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit and the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories Kamil Abu Rukun, demanding that Israel immediately ensure Palestinian travel through Erez Crossing. Since early March the Palestinian Authority has been stopping coordination with Israeli authorities in protest at plans to annex more of the West Bank, this has caused the issuing of permits for Gazans to cross the Erez crossing to all but cease.

Lord we pray that those in Gaza who require to pass into Israel for medical and humanitarian reasons will be given permission to do so. The ongoing Israeli blockade of the area continues to cause the failure of the Gaza medical system and impose huge suffering on the people. We pray that the blockade will end and justice be done for the people of Gaza so that they may have normal lives free from oppression and the risk of bombing. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayer.

Sabeel, along with the Palestinian Tour Guide Union, has been holding weekly online sessions for Palestinian tour guides to help them develop new skills during this time when there is no tourism. So far there have been sessions on idea generation, Palestinian food, and liberation theology.

Lord, we are thankful that many tour guides have come together to hear about various topics which may help them to develop their skills. We are grateful for the technology which allows this to happen and for the ability of the speakers to share their knowledge and skills. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayer.

We join with the World Council of Churches in their prayers for the countries of Eritrea and Ethiopia. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayer.


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