Lectionary Selection: John 21:1-19
Prayers for Lebanon:
Dear Lord and Savior, Friend and Brother, standing by the edge of the water with your eye and heart fixed upon us, now hear our prayer as we immerse ourselves in the busy-ness of the day, trying to forget how abandoned we feel in this heartless world.
Though we wish to be with you today in Paradise, instead we find ourselves here on Earth, continuing the struggle to live each day no matter what may befall us, to serve you alongside the least of our sisters and brothers, to preserve hope in you amid every pressure to which we are subjected by powers, seen and unseen.
Remember your church in Lebanon today, as it carries your light to a society staggering under mistrust, corruption, selfishness, nearby wars, lack of reckoning with the past, abuse of nature and misuse of your name.
Open our ears as you lead us in casting our nets to gather an abundant catch of love and truth. Open our eyes to see that you have already prepared a table of fellowship to refresh and renew us. Open our hearts and our lips, to declare, even in our human frailty, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.” And empower us to demonstrate that love with our whole lives. In Jesus’ name, we pray.Read more
Refugees: On March 28th a New Arrival from Lebanon Through the Humanitarian Corridors by the Protestant Churches and The Community of Sant’Egidio
LEGGI IN ITALIANO The 54 Syrian refugees will be welcomed by associations, parishes and communities in different Italian regions to immediately facilitate their integration. A welcoming event with press conference at the Fiumicino Airport on Thursday 28th Rome (NEV/CS19), March 25th, 2019 – On Thursday 28th 54 Syrian refugees will arrive in Fiumicino through the Humanitarian Corridors promoted by the FCEI. Read more…Read more
Lectionary Selection: Luke 4:22-40
Prayers for Lebanon:
God of grace and acceptance, show us how to welcome all we encounter as you have welcomed us into your family. May we receive the newcomers in our communities with open arms as we seek to love the stranger like Jesus. Remind us also of the great needs in our hometowns, as the people closest to us often need care as well. We open our hearts to see each individual as you would see them, looking for ways to show your grace wherever we can.
Master Physician, we look to you as we seek to heal our world from oppression, injustice, and conflict. We see that, even amidst the many challenges facing our world today, there are many hands reaching out and bringing your hope and comfort to those in pain, including those uprooted from their homes or displaced in their own countries as victims of conflict. May we continue to move forward, inspired by the progress we see and determined to bring peace to each of our communities.
We pray for Lebanon and the other countries of the Middle East region, that their leaders would be moved to find peaceful solutions in this evolving context. Would those in power see the inherent value in each human life and work toward societies in which each human life is honored. And would all who seek peace in the region know that your justice will be its foundation.Read more
#CorridoiUmanitari. 2,200 People Entered Europe in a Safe and Legal Way
LEGGI IN ITALIANO (NEV) 70 new arrivals in Italy, including 25 minors, about 1,500 refugees rescued. Their stories: Mouna, Dina and Reem travelling with their old mother and a brother with Down syndrome, and a Sunni-Shiite family fleeing the war. The FCEI, the Community of Sant'Egidio and the Tavola Valdese together for security and integration. Read more...Read more
Dear friends and Partners in the Lord,
Advent and Christmas greetings! May the one whose Advent we celebrate in this Holy Season come anew to your lives and Churches to bless and to give hope and light!
I would like to express deep gratitude to all of you on behalf of the refugee children who are educated by the National Evangelical Synod of Syria and Lebanon (NESSL). Your support and loving prayers have provided for over seven hundred children a normal childhood education and normal environment to enjoy being loved and cared for.
Many Thanks and Happy Advent!
Happy Christmas!Read more
From the President
By Dr. George Sabra, President, Near East School of Theology
“To Be or …More than To Be”
(an abbreviated version of the President’s Convocation Service address on Oct. 1, 2018
This academic year 2018/19 marks the 150th anniversary of the first founding of our Seminary in Lebanon. In 1869, the same American Protestant mission that founded the Syrian Protestant College (AUB) in 1866, founded the Theological Seminary in the village of Abeih, Mount Lebanon. That Theological Seminary of 1869 has been in existence ever since, though it had to suspend its work in some years, changed locations many times, and altered its name twice. N.E.S.T. is today the institution of theological education that has lived through and survived all the upheavals, crises, wars and developments of the past 150 years.Read more
Lectionary Selection: John 18:33-37
Prayers for Lebanon:
Almighty God. You are creator of all. You are the blessed and only Ruler. We come before you and praise you, for you are Lord of lords and King of kings.
You use your authority as the Omnipotent in ways unlike earthly kings.
Your rule brings peace and unity.
Your authority originates from doing the will of God.
We praise you for teaching us by example, to serve in humility. You who are Sovereign are found in the most unlikely places. You are with the refugee families in their tents and temporary housing. You are with the foreign workers who lack the most basic of legal protections. You bring light and truth into the darkest of places and situations. When we are impatient as we wait for better living conditions, better financial conditions, and for lasting peace, help us to see you and feel your presence, and acknowledge your sovereignty and Regal rule over the entire universe.
As the people of Lebanon face difficulty upon difficulty, help them to never lose hope in Christ the King. Monarchs and leaders come and go, but you are the same, yesterday, today and forever.
God of hope and light, fill us with trust in Christ our Savior.
Secretary General in the Middle East Council of Churches Dr. Souraya Bachealany participated with in Forum for Promoting Peace in Muslim Societies on “Inclusive Citizenship in the Middle East and North Africa”, which was opened today in Abhu Dhabi and lasts until November 15. The Forum, held in partnership with Wilton Park Association, affiliated to the British Foreign Ministry and Adyan Foundation, brought together over 50 prominent Muslim, Christian and other religious scholars from the Middle East, along with a number of policy makers from 11 countries around the world.Read more
Middle East Council of Churches
At its first General Assembly in Nicosia, Cyprus (May, 1974), the Middle East Council of Churches was formed at the conclusion of a series of successful discussions between the Orthodox churches in the Middle East (both Eastern and Oriental) and the Protestant and Episcopal members of the Near East Council of Churches.Read more
Lectionary Selection: John 6:56-69
Prayers for Lebanon:
We come to you, O living Father, the supplier of the bread that feeds and leads to eternal life, asking you once again to help us seek that which is true nourishment. We live in a place where the few enrich themselves with the bread of pride and the spirit of greed. And the many, the Lebanese people, simply want to live in a land of justice, respect and a hopeful future for their children, but are instead given the bread of bitterness and discouragement. Will these things around us ever change, O Lord? Will our hearts ever change? Will we, all of us, ever desire to live by your Spirit, and not according to our appetites and opinions?
Help us to see that we have no one on earth but you, and no one we desire in heaven besides you. Help us to hear the words of life and to follow them above all else. We ask the same for this struggling country; from its politicians to its wealthy to its struggling families to its refugees, all the way to those among us who seek to harm and control others.
Humble our hearts to seek your ways, not to wander off into meaningless journeys, but to walk with you now and into eternity. Amen.Read more