Thursday, November 25, 2010

25/11/10 - Français

Dimanche, des familles rendant visite à des parents à la prison de Remon en Israël ont été agressées par des gardes après que quelques unes des femmes aient protesté contre la façon irrespectueuse dont elles avaient été fouillées, injuriant une femme et une mère de prisoniers. Prions pour que prenne fin ce système d’oppression et d’humiliation qui a abouti à la mise en détention d’environ 40% de la population masculine palestinienne en Cisjordanie et dans la bande de Gaza depuis 1967, sans parler des femmes et des enfants. Pensons aux familles de prisonniers qui craignent pour la sécurité de leurs proches et la possibilité d’arrestations futures. Prions pour leur sécurité alors qu’ils deviennent l’objet de violences.

Prions pour les “Villages non reconnus”, les communautés palestiniennes en Israël qui ne sont pas reconnues par le gouvernement et qui ne reçoivent de ce fait aucun service social tels que routes, eau, éducation, etc. Lundi, le village bédouin d’Al-Arakib a été violemment démoli pour la septième fois en trois mois, tandis que les services du Premier Ministre faisaient obstruction à la possibilité pour les villages de Tel Arad et d’Atir-Um al-Hiran d’être officiellement reconnus par la justice. Puisse cette violence contre les 76.000 habitants des villages non reconnus du Negev prendre fin et puissent-ils obtenir justice dans leur combat non violent pour rester sur leur terre.

Comme le temps de l’Avent commence ce dimanche, prions pour l’Église du monde entier, pour que tous ceux qui travaillent pour le Royaume de Dieu soient, pendant cette nouvelle année liturgique, remplis de la joie du Christ qui ne peut leur être enlevée et pour qu’ils trouvent la force de continuer leur recherche de la paix avec la justice

Prions pour la retraite de Sabeel pour le clergé ce week-end à Taybeh. Au moment où des prêtres viennent de l’ensemble d’Israël et de la Palestine pour ce rassemblement œcuménique, prions pour que le Saint Esprit rende les participants capables de traduire les discussions sur la façon d’être un disciple du Christ humble et accueillant en actes pour servir le mieux la communauté.   

25/11/10 - English

On Sunday families visiting relatives in Israel’s Remon prison were assaulted by the guards after some of the women protested the way they were disrespectfully searched, injuring one wife and one mother of the prisoners. We pray for an end to this system of oppression and humiliation that has resulted in the detention of approximately 40% of the male Palestinian population in the West Bank and Gaza since 1967, not to mention women and children. We remember the families of prisoners who fear for their relatives’ safety and the possibility of future arrests, and pray for their safety as they become targets of violence. 

We pray for the “unrecognized villages,” Palestinian communities in Israel not recognized by the government who thereby do not receive any social services such as roads, water, education, etc. On Monday, the Bedouin village Al-Arakib was violently demolished for the 7th time in three months, while the Prime Minister’s Office blocked Tel Arad and Atir-Um al-Hiran from receiving official recognition in court. May this violence against the 76,000 people of the 45 unrecognized villages in the Negev come to an end and may they find justice in their non-violent struggle to stay on their land.

As the Advent Season begins this Sunday we pray for the world-wide church, that all who work for the Kingdom of God this new church year be filled with the joy of Christ that cannot be taken away and find strength to continue the journey of seeking peace with justice.

We pray for Sabeel’s Clergy Retreat this weekend in Taybeh. As priests come together from all over Israel and Palestine for this ecumenical gathering, we pray for the Holy Spirit  to enable all attendees to translate discussion of how to be a humble and hospitable disciple of Christ into action to best serve the community.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

18/11/10 - English

We pray for political leaders in the United States, Israel, and Palestine as a 90 day construction “freeze” of settlements in the West Bank that are already illegal under international law goes to vote in the Israeli cabinet. In exchange for this short-term freeze that excludes East Jerusalem, the U.S. is offering massive concessions to Israel including no future settlement freezes, a commitment not to support any United Nations resolution recognizing Palestinian sovereignty, and an additional $3 billion in military aid. We lament that the U.S. appears blinded by short-term goals in making such an offer and pray that the peace process can move forward in a way that is just for the people of both sides.

This week we remember the children in Dbayeh, a Palestinian refugee camp in Lebanon with a large Christian population, as they struggle to obtain a good education and break the cycle of poverty. We pray for Palestinian refugees all over the world, especially those who still struggle to build a life in refugee camps for over sixty years, and for a just solution. 

Yabous Productions recently won the prestigious 2010 Yasser Arafat Award for its work in reviving Palestinian popular culture in Jerusalem. We pray for artists all over Palestine who creatively and nonviolently resist the occupation through culture, and especially for Yabous as it strives “to give Jerusalem the ambience that reflects its historical, religious, political and cultural importance.” 

We hold the staff at Sabeel in prayer during this time of transition as several people in key roles end their time here. We pray for flexibility and guidance in filling these gaps as we continue the ministry of Sabeel.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

11/11/10 - English

Last Friday hundreds gathered in Bethlehem and Ramallah for worship services in memory of the Christians killed in Iraq, followed by candlelight vigils calling for reconciliation and peace. We pray for strength, encouragement, and security for Iraq’s Christian community, which has decreased by 60% since 2003 as members have fled abroad or been killed in the insecurity following the US invasion. We also pray for the world-wide Church as it responds to the ongoing violence in Iraq, that it will push for a just peace in Iraq with security for all.

We remember our Muslim brothers and sisters around the world in prayer this Tuesday as they celebrate Eid al-Adha, which commemorates Abraham’s obedience to God, and for those returning from the Hajj, or pilgrimage to Mecca.

We thank God for the resilience of the Palestinian spirit as shown in the cultural and performing arts that continue to thrive in Palestine. We pray especially for the Edward Said National Conservatory of Music in their mission “to strengthen Palestinian cultural identity through music and to enhance children’s artistic, intellectual and psychological development by making music a part of their lives.”

We pray for Assis Naim Ateek as he travels to Germany for the launch next week of the German translation of his book, A Palestinian Christian Cry for Reconciliation. We give thanks that his son, Sari Ateek, will be installed as a pastor of St. John’s Episcopal Church in Maryland on Sunday, and pray for him, his family, and the ministry of St. John’s.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

4/11/10 - English

We remember the 58 people killed in an attack in a Baghdad church on Sunday, and pray for the survivors, families and others in the region deeply affected by this senseless violence. We pray for an end to all religious intolerance, especially in this region once celebrated for its cultural and religious diversity.

A bill permitting community acceptance committees in Israel to refuse residence applications that "are incompatible with the social-cultural fabric of the community" is ready to be approved in the Knesset. This law would make official what is already seen in practice: almost complete segregation between Jews and Arabs in Israel. Rather than further division that enables alienation, we pray for opportunities for all peoples in this land to live together in peace.

According to the Israeli NGO Ir Amim, 5,300 children in East Jerusalem are denied education because there is no room in the schools. This week several schools were opened in East Jerusalem, funded by the Palestinian Authority, to address this deficiency by the Jerusalem municipality. Salam Fayyad, the PA Prime Minister, was unable to participate in the ceremonies after threats by the Israeli authorities. We hold in prayer all children around the world who are denied the right to education and a normal childhood.

We pray for Sabeel’s Youth Program as weekly meetings and Bible study begin for the fall. May this time of fellowship and spiritual growth be a blessing for all participants and the community.