Thursday, June 27, 2013

27/6/13 - English

Lord, this week we rejoice with the people of Gaza, Palestine, and the whole Arab world as we celebrate the beautiful story and remarkable talent of the most recent “Arab Idol,” Mohammad Assaf from Gaza’s Khan Younis Refugee Camp. We are so grateful for this simple, much-needed happiness uniting everyone in feelings of hope and inspiration. We pray that Assaf would continue to lift the spirits of the people with his songs and in his new roles of Goodwill Ambassador for the UN and for the State of Palestine, which were awarded him as a testament to the figure of hope he has become. As Assaf has been quick to point out, there is much talent in Gaza and among the Palestinian people; we pray that it would not be stifled by Israeli occupation and that the Palestinian government would search out and foster its development. Even as we savor these signs of hope, we remember that much work must be done towards peace, and we pray that one day very soon we will be able to celebrate the realization of this dream. Lord, in your mercy…

God, we also lift up the many students finishing up the school year and all the secondary students taking the national Tawjihi exam. In any context, these kinds of exams are stressful, but checkpoints and the many additional factors of living under occupation complicate them further. Lord, we pray also for the coming summer months, and with few opportunities for Palestinian youth and children during this vacation, we thank you for the organizations and summer camps that provide communities with alternative activities. We ask that all the Palestinian young people would be able to enjoy a safe, fun, and productive summer. Lord, in your mercy…

For Sabeel’s ministry, we pray especially for the global young adult festival, “Moving Mountains, Reshaping the World,” which will begin this weekend. Lord would you provide safe travels and easy entrance into the country for all the participants from over 30 countries around the world. We ask that the festival would be a time for these young adults to connect in profoundly meaningful ways as they learn about injustice and work for justice and peace. Lord would you surprise us this coming week with new lessons learned and new friendships formed. May we sweat with the hard labor of doing justice, and may we experience the taste of the peace you offer us through Jesus. Lord, in your mercy…


Finally, we pray alongside the World Council of Churches for the countries of Argentina, Paraguay, and Uruguay. Lord, in your mercy…

27/6/13 - Français

Seigneur, cette semaine nous nous réjouissons avec le peuple de Gaza, de Palestine, et avec tout le peuple arabe en fêtant la belle aventure et le talent remarquable de la plus récente “idole arabe”, Mohammad Assaf du camp de réfugiés Khan Younis de Gaza. Nous sommes tellement reconnaissants pour ce bonheur simple, tellement nécessaire qui réunit tout le monde dans des sentiments d’espoir et d’enthousiasme. Nous te prions de faire qu’Assaf continue à soutenir le moral du peuple par ses chants et dans son nouveau rôle d’ambassadeur de bonne volonté des Nations Unies et de Palestine qu’on lui a attribué en témoignage de l’image d’espoir qu’il est devenu. Alors qu’Assaf s’est hâté de signaler qu’il y a beaucoup de talents à Gaza et chez le peuple palestinien, nous te prions pour que ces talents ne soient pas étouffés par l’occupation israélienne et pour que le gouvernement palestinien les fasse émerger et favorise leur développement. Pourtant en savourant ces signes d’espoir, nous n’oublions pas qu’il reste beaucoup de travail à faire pour la paix, nous te prions pour qu’un jour très proche nous soyons en mesure de fêter la réalisation de ce rêve. Seigneur, dans ta miséricorde, entends notre prière.

Ô Dieu, nous te recommandons aussi les nombreux étudiants qui terminent leur année scolaire et tous les étudiants du secondaire qui vont passer le baccalauréat. Dans tous les contextes ce genre d’examen est angoissant, mais les checkpoints et toutes les autres conditions de vie sous occupation compliquent encore davantage les choses. Seigneur nous te prions aussi pour les prochains mois d’été et pour le petit nombre des possibilités offertes aux enfants et jeunes de Palestine pendant ces congés, nous te remercions pour les organisations et les camps d’été qui proposent des activités aux communautés. Nous te prions pour que tous les jeunes Palestiniens puissent jouir d’un été sûr, amusant et enrichissant. Seigneur, dans ta miséricorde, entends notre prière.

En ce qui concerne la mission de Sabeel, nous te prions en particulier pour le festival mondial des jeunes adultes, “Remuer des montagnes, refaire le monde”, qui va s’ouvrir ce week-end. Seigneur, daigne assurer des voyages en sécurité et une entrée facile dans le pays à tous les participants venant de plus de 30 pays du monde. Nous te prions afin que ce festival soit pour ces jeunes adultes fait de rencontres profondes dans leur approche de l’injustice et dans leurs activités en faveur de la justice et de la paix. Seigneur daigne au cours de la prochaine semaine nous faire la surprise de recevoir de nouveaux enseignements et de former de nouvelles amitiés. Puisssions-nous transpirer en travaillant dur pour la justice et puissions nous éprouver la saveur de la paix que tu nous propose par Jésus. Seigneur, dans ta miséricorde, entends notre prière.

Nous te prions enfin en union avec le Conseil Œcuménique des Églises pour les populations de l’Argentine, du Paraguay et de l’Uruguay. Seigneur, dans ta miséricorde, entends notre prière.


Thursday, June 20, 2013

20/6/13 - English

Lord, this week, as we take time to honor World Refugee Day this Thursday, we remember the dignity, courage and strength of refugees around the world. With 43.7 million refugees and internally displaced people, our hearts break at the injustice done to so many globally. We pray in solidarity with them for just governments to work for provision for temporary needs and for their repatriation. We pray especially for all the refugees here in the Middle East – for Palestinians still hoping for the day they can return home to their lands, for Syrian refugees struggling in camps in neighboring Arab countries, for Eritrean refugees who have undergone torture in the Sinai peninsula and now face racism within Israel. Lord, accompany these people in their suffering and bring about solutions quickly! Lord, in you mercy...

God of peace, equality, and justice, we bring before you our worry and our grief at the continued racism that seems to increase week by week within this land. Just this weekend, two Palestinian women were assaulted by an Israeli man as they attempted to buy tickets for the Jerusalem light rail. Tuesday brought news of an unexpected  attack by Jewish extremists on the peaceful Arab-Israeli village of Abu Ghosh, during which extremists painted racist graffiti like “Arabs out!” in the village. Lord, would you bring an end to this racism and violence! Please bring justice to the victims of these acts and widespread change to racist currents of thought within society. Lord, in your mercy...

Lord, as settlements expand, as new roads connecting settlements are built, and as members of the Knesset make strong statements about their plans to annex Area C and build upon more West Bank land, we are desperate for these destructive decisions to end! As John Kerry visits Israel and Palestine in the coming weeks with intentions of restarting peace talks, we pray that you would give him the ability to bring people together in serious negotiations. Would you open the eyes of all the leaders to see the absolute necessity of building policies of peace and justice according to international law. Lord, in your mercy...

Here at Sabeel we lift up this week’s upcoming events: Thursday’s Nazareth youth meeting with Rev. Hatem Jeries, Friday’s Clergy Wives meeting in Beit Sahour, and the Beit Saida excavations and tour with Sabeel Nazareth and a visiting group from Australia on Friday and Saturday. Lord, may we never get caught up in idle programming, but would you lead us always into work that bears much fruit. We pray this for these events as well as for the global young adult festival, as final preparations are made to welcome young adults from all over the world. Lord, in your mercy...


Finally, we pray alongside the World Council of Churches for the country of Brazil. Lord, in your mercy... 

Thursday, June 13, 2013

13/6/13 - English

Lord, we begin this week with a light heart and thanksgiving for the unforeseen fame of Palestinian Mohammad Assaf in the popular reality TV show, Arab Idol. We lift up our joy at the unique story of Mohammad’s difficult journey from Gaza, his serendipitous admittance to the show, and the amazing way in which his songs and story are uniting the Arab World in hopeful excitement. Assaf has “I will keep singing until the world hears the cries of the children of Palestine.” Now in the final rounds, we pray that he would be able to continue using this platform to share the beautiful culture of Palestine with the rest of the world and to raise awareness about the injustices Palestine and especially Gaza endure. We pray that you would bless him in his efforts, and bring about more unexpected opportunities for creative, nonviolent responses to unjust systems of oppression. Lord, in your mercy…

God, for five years in a row now, the Israeli municipality of Jerusalem has organized a “Festival of Lights” in and around the Old City of Jerusalem – installing decorations that pass through the Muslim, Jewish, and Christian Quarters. Each year the event has commenced on the anniversary of the 1967 War and continued until June 11, which marks the anniversary of the demolition of the Moghrabi neighborhood, which was destroyed in 1967 to create the plaza in front of the Western Wall. Though the show can seem unobtrusive and light-hearted, it leaves a strong impression on local Palestinian communities about the dominance of Israel over the Palestinian part of Jerusalem. Lord, we pray that Israel would realize that the only way that will lead to the peace of Jerusalem is to share the city between Palestine and Israel. Lord, in your mercy…

Even in the immediate vicinity of Sabeel, we see injustice taking place day-by-day and hear the stories of it from friends and neighbors. As the Israeli government continues to expand settlements in Jerusalem, they build new roads to connect these settlements to each other, isolating Palestinian communities from each other, demolishing Palestinian homes, and confiscating property in the desired path. Lord, we pray for all the people affected by the new settlement road being constructed behind the Sabeel offices, the area of which will incorporate 80-100 dunams of Palestinian East Jerusalem land. Lord would you bring justice to all who have lost homes, properties, and olive groves to this “development project,” and help us in raising international awareness about the impossible circumstances these families face and about Israel’s invasive, colonial policies. Lord, in your mercy…

We continue to pray that you would bless the work of Sabeel with fruitful ministry and peace amidst the chaotic challenges of our context. For the upcoming Study Circle next Tuesday, June 19, we pray for wisdom and good dialogue as participants study the Church of Scotland’s Report “The Inheritance of Abraham? A Report on the Promised Land.” We pray also for Sabeel Nazareth’s Community Program trip to the village of Iqrit, and for Sabeel’s young adult festival as final preparations are made and participants ready themselves for this new experience. Lord, in your mercy…


Finally, we pray alongside the World Council of Churches for the countries of Angola and Mozambique. Lord, in your mercy… 

Thursday, June 6, 2013

6/6/13 - English

Lord, to you who mourn with us, we cry out this week in grief and exhaustion as we commemorate the grave losses of the 1967 War and reflect on 46 years of Israeli Occupation. God, we remember before you the thousands of people killed and the injustice done to the 300,000 Palestinian refugees displaced during the war. Moreover, we remember all the land captured by Israel during the war, especially lifting up those who continue under the brutal force of occupation or siege, namely East Jerusalem, the West Bank, the Gaza Strip, and the Golan Heights. With 124 settlements now built on West Bank land and 12 settlements in East Jerusalem, we pray for an immediate end to settlement building. God, would you end the unjust control of Palestinian and Syrian lives through the end of occupation and the termination of the siege on Gaza. Lord, in your mercy...

God, we pray also for the Palestinian leaders, especially as newly-appointed Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah begins the three-week process of forming a new government. Lord, would you grant this new government wisdom as they work towards forming a unity government according to the long-delayed reconciliation deal with Hamas. Please grant them success in their tasks of achieving unity among the Palestinian people and peace with Israel. Lord, in your mercy...

Again this week, we witnessed devastating acts of racism and violence, and we pray that you would reverse this frightening trend. We condemn the intentionally offensive, Anti-Christian remarks graffitied across the walls of Jerusalem’s Dormition Abbey last Friday by right-wing Jewish settlers. We pray for all involved in the theme park scandal in Tel Aviv where an Arab school headmaster was lied to about reservation availability. We pray for the West Bank towns of Burin and Madama whose olive groves were torched Monday, destroying at least 50 acres of land and approximately 800 old and beloved trees. God strengthen the victims of these racist acts and heal the sick mentality of those who would perpetrate such violence against others. Lord, in your mercy...

Here at Sabeel, we continue to work towards and pray for the two conferences this year: “Moving Mountains, Reshaping the World,” the global young adult festival to be held July 1-6 and “The Bible and the Israel-Palestine Conflict,” Sabeel’s 9th International Conference, to be held November 19-25. Lord would you please bless the hard work being poured into these events and bring about meaningful, fruitful outcomes from both conferences. Lord, in your mercy...


Finally, we pray alongside the World Council of Churches for the peoples of Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa, and Swaziland. Lord, in your mercy...

6/6/13 - Français

Seigneur, vers toi qui pleure avec nous, nos crions cette semaine notre peine et notre fatigue en commémorant les lourdes pertes de la guerre de 1967 et en considérant les 46 années d’occupation israélienne. Ô Dieu, nous nous souvenons devant toi des milliers de gens tués et de l’injustice faite aux 300.000 réfugiés palestiniens déplacés pendant la guerre. De plus, nous nous souvenons de toute la terre saisie par Israêl au cours de la guerre, et nous te présentons en particulier celles qui continuent de l’être sous le régime brutal de l’occupation ou du siège comme à Jérusalem Est, en Cisjordanie, dans la Bande de Gaza ou sur les Hauteurs du Golan. Avec maintenant 124 colonies construites sur le territoire de la Cisjordanie et 12 colonies à Jérusalem Est, nous te prions pour que cesse immédiatement la construction de colonies. Ô Dieu, daigne mettre un terme à l’autorité injuste imposée aux vies palestiniennes et syriennes en faisant cesser l’occupation et lever le siège de Gaza. Seigneur, dans ta miséricorde, entends notre prière.

Ô Dieu, nous te prions aussi pour les dirigeants palestiniens, en particulier au moment où le Premier Ministre qui vient d’être nommé, Rami Hamdallah, entame le processus de constitution en trois semaines d’un nouveau gouvernement. Seigneur, daigne accorder à ce nouveau gouvernement la sagesse nécessaire à la constitution d’un gouvernement d’unité en vue d’un accord si longtemps différé avec le Hamas. Daigne le conduire à réussir dans ses efforts pour réaliser l’unité au sein du peuple palestinien et la paix avec Israël. Seigneur, dans ta miséricorde, entends notre prière.

Cette semaine encore, nous avons assisté à des actes de violence et de racisme, et nous te prions pour que tu renverse cette tendance effrayante. Nous condamnons les graffitis anti-chrétiens, volontairement agressifs, tagués sur les murs de l’Abbaye de la Dormition à Jérusalem par des colons juifs de droite. Nous te prions pour tous les gens impliqués dans le scandale du parc d’attraction de Tel Aviv où l’on a menti à un directeur d’école arabe sur les possibilités de réservation. Nous te prions pour les villes de Burin et Madama en Cisjordanie  dont les oliveraies ont été incendiées lundi, détruisant au moins 25 hectares de terres avec environ 800 vieux arbres vénérables. Ô Dieu donne force aux victimes de ces actes racistes et guéris de leur maladie mentale ceux qui commettent des actes d’une telle violence contre d’autres. Seigneur, dans ta miséricorde, entends notre prière.

Ici à Sabeel, nous continuons à travailler et à prier pour les deux conférences de cette année : “Déplacer des montagnes, refaçonner le monde,” pour le festival mondial des jeunes adultes du 1er au 6 juillet et “La Bible et le conflit israélo-palestinien” pour la 9ème Conférence Internationale de Sabeel du 19 au 25 novembre. Seigneur, daigne bénir le gros travail investi dans ces deux évènements et faire qu’ils portent de beaux fruits. Seigneur, dans ta miséricorde, entends notre prière.

Enfin, nous te prions en union avec le Conseil Œcuménique des Églises pour les populations du Lesotho, de la Namibie, de l’Afrique du Sud et du Swaziland. Seigneur, dans ta miséricorde, entends notre prière.