As Jerusalem readies itself for Holy Week activities, we pray for cooperation and goodwill among the region’s various denominations. We hope that Easter can be a time of unity for Christians in Jerusalem and around the world. We pray that the risen Christ’s message of peace will inspire us all this Easter season.
We pray for an end to clashes in Gaza. Israeli military forces and Hamas fighters continue to exchange fire along the Gaza Strip’s border with Israel. Additionally, Israel continues to deny adequate shipments of medical, food and building supplies into Gaza and stops nearly all exports out of Gaza. We pray that current negotiations will result in a peace based on justice and mutual respect instead of attempting to impose quiet through intimidation.
Israel’s new government, led by Benjamin Netanyahu, will take power this week. We pray that Israel’s new leaders will take this opportunity to freeze settlement expansion, halt military incursions, and engage in productive dialogue with Palestinian leaders. We also pray that other nations will see this as a chance to implement new and effective policies in this region.
This Friday, Sabeel is organizing a “Contemporary Way of the Cross” journey along the traditional Via Dolorosa for Palestinian Christians. This Holy Week activity is designed as an act of worship rooted in the land where Jesus was born, lived, died, and rose again, linking the original events of Good Friday with the continuing suffering of the occupied people who live in this land today. We pray that the event will be conducted in a spirit of ecumenism and hope in the ever transformative power of the Resurrection.