We pray for all those affected by the recent increase of illegal settlement construction in East Jerusalem. Last week several Israeli Knesset members, Jerusalem councilmen, and former Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee attended the cornerstone-laying ceremony for settler housing units on the Mount of Olives, with intentions for further expansion. This week the Jerusalem City Council approved the plans for settler apartments in Sheikh Jarrah whose construction will cause the eviction of a number of Palestinian families. We pray that the national and international community will not let this settlement construction that is illegal under international law and destructive for peace go unheeded.
Prices of essential items such as food, water and gas are steadily increasing in Israel and Palestine, the Middle East, and all over the world. We pray for everyone for whom this is a hardship, especially for those who already struggle to make ends meet and for whom this is an additional burden.
Our prayers remain with the people of Egypt; we especially give thanks for the Christians and Muslims working together for a better nation and protecting each other during Muslim prayers and Christian services. May they be encouraged and strengthened, and continue to give inspiration and hope across the Middle East.
We pray for the upcoming Sabeel conference, Challenging Empire: God, Faithfulness, and Resistance, that is now less than two weeks away. We remember the people from Africa and Latin America who were unable to get visas to join us for the conference. We also give thanks for the international volunteers who have arrived in Jerusalem and for the affirming atmosphere of teamwork among all the staff preparing for the conference.
With the Prayer Cycle of the World Council of Churches, we pray for: Belgium, Luxembourg, Netherlands