Coronavirus testing data from Israel suggests there has been a slowdown in the country’s outbreak, three weeks after a second nationwide lockdown was imposed. In recent weeks the country has experienced infection and mortality rates that have been among the highest in the world, relative to population size.
Lord, we pray that the lockdown in Israel will help to diminish the sudden peak in the numbers of people infected with COVID-19 in Israel. We also pray for those who continue to be affected by the rise in cases in the West Bank and Gaza. We pray for wisdom for all those in authority around the world to know how best to limit the numbers of those being infected and suffering with coronavirus. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayersRead more
Israel has extended its nationwide lockdown after more than 9,000 new coronavirus cases were confirmed on one day at the end of September. In Palestine there have been 426 new cases confirmed recently.
Dear Lord, we pray for the grave situation in Israel/Palestine with the high rise in the numbers of coronavirus cases and the pressure this will put on the health facilities. We pray for wisdom for those in authority in the decisions they make to try and curb this sudden rise in infections. We pray they will help to protect the population from even higher infection levels. Lord, in your mercy...hear our prayer.Read more
A BBC enquiry has discovered that, Roman Abramovich, the Russian owner of Chelsea Football Club, controls companies which have donated $100 million to Elad, an Israeli settler organization. Elad has been confiscating Palestinian property and buying up homes in East Jerusalem to re-house 450 Jewish settlers in a predominately Palestinian neighborhood. Any settler group activity in occupied East Jerusalem is a breach of international law. While in Hebron, in the occupied West Bank, the Israeli authorities are planning to confiscate 3,800 dunams,(almost 1000 acres), of Palestinian land in seventeen different locations around the city.
Omniscient God, you see everything that happens on the earth and you listen out for the cries of the poor and the oppressed. You see when the rich and powerful oppress the poor, as your prophet Micah said: ‘ They covet fields and seize them and houses and take them away, they oppress a man and his house, a man and his inheritance’ ( Micah 2:2). We pray for an end to the seizure of Palestinian homes and land by the Israeli authorities and settlers. Lord, in your mercy…hear our prayer.Read more
The Executive Committee of the Middle East Council of Churches held an exceptional meeting, as the Council's Twelfth General Assembly was scheduled to take place at this time. However, the exceptional circumstances imposed by the repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the inability of direct meeting between members from different countries and churches, and replacing it with virtual electronic means for the member churches in Egypt, Kuwait, Palestine, Jordan, Syria, Iraq, Iran, and Cyprus, produced a legal agreement on this exceptional meeting, which was hosted in Lebanon by His Beatitude Cardinal Mar Bechara Boutros Al-Rahi - Patriarch of Syriac Maronite Church of Antioch at the Maronite Patriarchate in Bkerke with the participation of His Beatitude Youhanna X - Patriarch of Antioch and All the East for the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch and president of the Council for the Greek Orthodox Family, His Holiness Mor Ignatius Aphrem II - Patriarch of Antioch and All the East and Supreme Head of the Universal Syriac Orthodox Church who is the president of the Council for the Eastern Orthodox Family, and Right Rev. Dr. Habib Badr, President of the National Evangelical Union Lebanon and president of the Council for the Evangelical Family. His Beatitude Mar Louis Raphael Sako – Patriarch of Babylon for Chaldeans and president of the Council for the Catholic family, participated electronically from Iraq. And in a generous initiative, His Holiness Pope Tawadros II - Pope of the Coptic Orthodox Church hosted members of the Committee from the various churches in Egypt at the Papal Headquarters in the Coptic Orthodox Church of in Cairo.Read more
Israel has imposed a second national lockdown to last three weeks after a recent surge of over 4000 confirmed COVID-19 cases every day. The lockdown will close all schools and only supermarkets and pharmacies will remain open. Schools have only just reopened for the start of the new academic year and this lockdown will bring major disruption.
Lord, we pray for all those in positions of authority in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory as they take decisions on how to manage the resurgence of the coronavirus throughout the land. We pray for the families trying to manage their work and their children’s education from home. We pray too for the protection of the care workers looking after those who are seriously affected by the virus. Lord, in your mercy...hear our prayer.Read more
In a time when the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the globe and as the struggle against historic and systemic injustice and oppression is revived, the circumstances of Palestinians living under occupation continue to worsen. The threat of Israeli annexation of large parts of the West Bank is an example of the decades of policies that have denied Palestinians their basic human and civil rights.
This was a webinar conversation with two Palestinian Christian leaders, Rifat Kassis and the Rev. Munther Isaac, as they discussed the current reality, the situation of Palestinian Christians, and the recently-issued “Cry for Hope,” a letter to the world calling for attention and action to challenge injustice and to seek change to which UCC and Disciples leaders have responded.
This webinar took place during the World Council of Churches’ World Week of Peace in Palestine and Israel on September 16, 2020Read more
Pillsbury, owned by food-manufacturing-conglomerate General Mills, is known for its cookie dough, cinnamon buns, and other sweet treats. But Pillsbury produces frozen baked goods in a factory in the Atarot Industrial Zone, an illegal Israeli settlement in East Jerusalem. This zone violates international law by exploiting land, water, and other resources that were captured by force from their legal Palestinian owners. This means that General Mills is directly profiting from the illegal occupation of Palestinian territory. In fact, in a recent report, the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights highlighted General Mills as one of seven American companies involved in Israel’s illegal settlement activities.Read more
On the 9th of September, the Jerusalem District Court ordered the eviction of the Palestinian family of Nasser Rajabi from their residential property of three apartments in the Batan Al-Hawa neighbourhood of Silwan in Occupied East Jerusalem. There are thirty family members living in these apartments who will soon be facing homelessness, along with eighty other residents in the area. In January the Jerusalem Magistrates’ Court ordered the family to leave their property following a lawsuit brought by the Ateret Cohanim Settler Association. The settlers claim the properties belong to the Benvenisti Trust which was set up in the nineteenth century to house Jews fleeing from the Yemen.
Lord, we pray for the dozens of Palestinian families threatened with eviction in East Jerusalem by Jewish settlers supported by the Israeli legal system. We pray that the legal system will stop sowing seeds of injustice by denying the rights of Palestinians to reclaim their properties, while granting historical claims to Jewish settlers. Lord, in your mercy...hear our prayers.Read more
For more than a decade, Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip have suffered under a brutal blockade and growing humanitarian crisis. The besieged population, lacking a functioning healthcare system, now faces a health emergency with the arrival of the first of COVID-19 cases among the general population.Read more
Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Center shares prayers from Palestinian youth along the Via Dolorosa in Jerusalem.Read more