We remember in prayer all those affected by the bombing outside the Coptic Church of St Peter and St Paul in Alexandria, Egypt, killing twenty-two and injuring nearly one hundred as the New Year’s Eve mass was ending. On Wednesday, January 5, Sabeel held a service in Jerusalem to pray for Christians all over the world, in the Middle East, and especially in Egypt, and for an end to all prejudice and its violent expressions. We join in this prayer.
We pray for the family and friends of Jawaher Abu Rahmah, a young woman who collapsed and later died after Israeli soldiers used tear gas against the protestors at the weekly nonviolent demonstration against the separation wall cutting the Palestinian villagers of Bil’in away from their land. Her brother, Bassem, was killed two years ago by a tear gas grenade hitting his chest. We pray for an end to the increasing violence against peaceful demonstrators as well as an end to the injustice that creates the need for demonstrations.
As 2011 opens in an unhealthy political limbo, we pray for all the peoples of this land. Please give Palestinians and Israelis the wisdom and courage to make the right moves to get out of this stalemate and resume serious peace talks to end this conflict.
The first Palestine National Orchestra rang in the new year with debut performances in Ramallah, Jerusalem, and Haifa. More than 40 Palestinian and foreign musicians from leading orchestras around the world played a program that included western and Palestinian classical songs, including one by a Hungarian Jewish composer. It was the first time some members of the Palestinian diaspora were able to come to Palestine. We give thanks for this musical expression of hope and cooperation, and pray that the introductory words of the concert will come true: "Today an orchestra, tomorrow a state."
With the Prayer Cycle of the World Council of Churches, we pray for: Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Oman, Yeman, Iran, Iraq