Wave of Prayer

2nd of February 2023

Next Tuesday Kumi Now will consider how the Israeli blockade of Gaza impacts those who need to travel within the Palestinian territory for medical treatment. Many patients are unable to attend medical appointments for chronic illnesses as they are denied permits by the Israeli authorities.

  • Merciful Lord, we pray for those suffering serious illnesses in Gaza, especially those who are denied travel permits. We pray for an end to the sixteen-year-old blockade of Gaza.
    Lord, in your mercy…

The US government has raised concerns over the recent escalation in violence used by Israeli forces. Ten Palestinians were killed during the Israeli raid on the Jenin refugee camp in the early hours of Thursday morning. This was the deadliest attack by the Israeli forces in the occupied Palestinian territory for decades. Several rockets were fired into southern Israel from Gaza in response to the Jenin raid. Israel then hit back with three ground strikes in Gaza.

  • Lord, we pray for the international efforts to mediate between Israel and the Palestinians to de-escalate the levels of violence. We pray for an end to the relentless Israeli army attacks on Palestinian communities, leading to so many deaths and injuries.
    Lord, in your mercy..

This week the Forum of Palestinian Journalists, based in Gaza, has criticised the dismissal of the cartoonist, Mohammad Sabaaneh. They stated that his dismissal ‘reflects the Palestinian Authority’s strange insistence on suppressing freedom of opinion and expression’. Sabaaneh’s recent cartoon was critical of the Palestinian Authority’s apparent lack of response to the heightened level of Israeli violence.

  • Lord, we give thanks for the courage of people working in the media who use their freedom of expression to speak truth to power, even at great personal cost.
    Lord, in your mercy..

The Israeli government has just issued new guidelines which will make it even more difficult for foreigners to study or work in the occupied West Bank. These restrictions will further isolate Palestinians living in the West Bank from foreigners and from their own family members who do not hold West Bank ID. 

  • Lord, we pray that international organisations will challenge the Israeli government over their attempts to further repress and isolate Palestinians living in the occupied West Bank.
    Lord, in your mercy..

On Thursday, the 26th of January, Israeli forces informed Palestinian landowners in Khallet Ad-Dabi, one of the nineteen hamlets making up Masafer Yatta in the South Hebron hills, that they are about to uproot their saplings. The Dababseh family had planted a hundred fruit trees on the old site of the local school, which had been demolished  by the Israeli army two years previously.

  • Lord, we cry out to you for the inhabitants of Masafer Yatta who have suffered years of violence from the Israeli forces. Their livestock and storage have been damaged, their wells filled in, their homes and schools demolished and yet they still show courage and resilience. We pray that international governments and organisations will continue to support them in their attempts to live peaceably on their land.
    Lord, in your mercy …

This month Ben Gvir, the National Security Minister, has ordered Israeli police to remove all Palestinian flags from public places. In response to this order an Israeli artist living in Tel Aviv drew himself in the colours of the Palestinian flag. Michael Rosanov then made his artwork into his Facebook profile picture and this has caught on with other disaffected Israelis. Last Saturday, 100,000 Israelis turned out in Tel Aviv to protest against the policies of the new right-wing Israeli government.

  • Lord, we pray that  Israelis will have the courage to speak out in protest over any  government policies they believe may be used to oppress anyone, no matter their ethnicity. 
    Lord, in your mercy…

This week the Assembly of Catholic Ordinaries in the Holy Land spoke out in strong condemnation of Israeli settler attacks which have taken place in the Christian Quarter of Jerusalem. In the most recent attack a large group of settlers entered the New Gate and started shouting and chanting while waving flags. They then started to throw around tables and chairs at local restaurants, terrorising tourists and shopkeepers. 

  • Lord, we pray that the authorities responsible for administering law and order in Jerusalem will prosecute any settlers who deliberately vandalise the city. We pray that believers of all faiths will continue to  have access to their holy sites and can visit their places of worship without fear of assault from radical groups.
    Lord, in your mercy…
  • We join with the World Council of Churches in their prayers for the countries of Algeria, Libya, Morocco, Western Sahara, Tunisia.
    Lord, in your mercy…

Wave of Prayer

26.1.23

Next Tuesday Kumi Now will consider the discrimination faced by Palestinian citizens living in Israel where they make up over 20% of the whole population. Almost every aspect of their daily lives is affected by discrimination and over half of all Arab families in Israel are living below the poverty line.

Lord, we seek your guidance and presence as we continue to give witness to the discrimination suffered by Palestinians living in Israel.
Lord, in your mercy..

This week Palestinians disrupted the plans of the Israeli authorities to start demolishing their homes in Jabel Al-Mukkaber in East Jerusalem by pouring oil on the streets. The Israelis had to get their vehicles towed away from the area. They plan to demolish 800 Palestinian homes in the neighbourhood to make way for a commercial centre and 500 Israeli housing units. During the incident the Israeli authorities assaulted two local Palestinian men.

Lord, we bring before you all Palestinian families facing the threat of home demolition. We pray for courage and resilience as so many continue to live with the threat of forcible eviction.
Lord, in your mercy..

Sabeel Jerusalem has just hosted a group of students from the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary based in the US state of Pennsylvania. The group of Presbyterian students were able to witness for themselves the restrictions imposed on Palestinians living under Israeli occupation and learned about Palestinian Liberation Theology.

Lord, we thank you for the visit of the American seminarians to Sabeel. We pray that their visit will have impacted them deeply and that they will now go and tell their friends and family of the things they have witnessed.
Lord, in your mercy…

The Israeli army shot two Palestinians during a heavy army raid in Jenin refugee camp in the early hours of Thursday, the19th of January. Jawad Bawaqneh, a 57-year-old father of six and local teacher, and Adham Jabareen, a young fighter in the Jenin Brigade were both shot and killed. A local journalist reported that Jawad was killed as he tried to bring Adham into his home to give him first aid treatment.

Lord, we pray for the families of Jawad and Adham as they grieve their loss. We pray for an end to the Israeli army raids that are causing so many injuries and deaths in Palestinian communities.
Lord, in your mercy..

On Wednesday, the 18th of January, the Orthodox Armenian Patriarch of Jerusalem, Nourhan Manougian arrived in Bethlehem’s Manger Square at the head of a long procession. The procession, which starts in the Armenian Patriarchate of the Old City in Jerusalem, marks the celebration of Christmas and Epiphany for Armenian Christians.

Lord, we thank you that Orthodox and Armenian Christians have just been able to celebrate Christmas according to the Julian Calendar, while the Roman Catholics and other denominations celebrated Christmas on December 25th, following the Augustan Calendar.
Lord, in your mercy..

This is the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity and we look to the Words of Prayer of the World Council of Churches as we think of ‘the tears of the oppressed’ .

On Monday 23rd January, Sabeel, in cooperation with the catechetical office of the Latin Patriarchate, Jerusalem held a worship service for 10 Christian schools and almost 200 students. The service was held in the Melkite Church Jerusalem.

‘God of justice and grace, remove the scales from our eyes, so we can truly see the oppression around us.’ (Day 4) Lord, we ask for courage to stand up and advocate for all who are silenced as they seek justice and suffer oppression.    May we especially remember the tears of the oppressed living in the Holy Land and be faithful in our prayers for them.
Lord, in your mercy..

We join with the World Council of Churches in their prayers for the countries of Cyprus, Greece and Turkey.
Lord, in your mercy..

Wave of Prayer

19.1.23

Kumi Now will focus on the city of Jerusalem on Tuesday, the 24th of January. The United Nations’ Partition Plan in 1947 resolved that the city of Jerusalem would be an internationally administered city. However the Israeli government has taken steps to gain full Israeli sovereignty over the city, especially since the 1967 annexation of East Jerusalem.

•    Lord Jesus, when you wept over Jerusalem you lamented that those living in the city could not recognise ‘the things that make for peace’. We pray for strength and guidance for all those who seek peace and righteousness in this suffering city.
Lord, in your mercy…

On Thursday, the 12th of January, three Palestinians were shot and killed by Israeli soldiers. Habib Kamil ,25 years old, and Abdulhadi Nazal ,18 years old, were shot dead by live fire from Israeli troops during a raid in the town of Qabatiya, near Jenin. Earlier in the day an Israeli sniper shot Samir Aslan, a 41-year-old father of eight, when he was on the roof of his house with his family in Qalandiya refugee camp.

•    Lord, we pray for the families of Habib, Abdulhadi and Samir as they grieve their loss. We pray for an end to the relentless Israeli military raids on Palestinian communities, which are provoking violence and leading to numerous arrests, injuries and extrajudicial killings.
Lord, in your mercy…

Last week the US Court of Appeal in Washington dismissed the allegations brought by the Jewish National Fund, (JNF) against the United States Campaign for Palestinian Rights, (USCPR). The JNF are seeking to prove that the USCPR are liable for militant attacks against Israelis and Americans because of their support for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions and for the Great March of Return. The judge deemed the allegations were ‘insufficient’ and the attorney representing the USCPR stated that the lawsuit was an attempt to ‘smear human rights advocates as terrorists’.

•    Lord, our help and our shield, we ask for protection for advocates for human rights as they face so many obstacles and attempts to silence their pleas for justice.
Lord, in your mercy…

A health clinic in Kiryat Malakhi in southern Israel refused to give first aid treatment to Hamoudi Tarboosh a 23-year-old Palestinian on Wednesday, the 11th of January. He had cut his hand on a broken glass door while at work in a local store. Even though he was losing a lot of blood from the wound, the manager of the nearby clinic refused him entry and he had to travel to a hospital in Ashkelon to receive treatment. Recently the Israeli Medical Association declared that Israeli doctors ‘will never discriminate in the care they provide’. This declaration was issued in the media after the new far-right National Missions Minister had earlier stated that Israeli doctors should be allowed to refuse to provide treatments that contravene their religious faith.

•    Lord, we pray that the ministers of the Israeli government will consider their pronouncements with care to avoid unleashing even stronger waves of racism and discrimination in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories.
Lord, in your mercy…

Israeli authorities are preparing to carry out the collective eviction of eight of the 28 neighbourhoods in the Masafer Yatta area in the South Hebron Hills.

•    Lord we pray that international governments and organisations will challenge the Israeli government over their plans to forcibly evict the people of Masafer Yatta. Lord these communities have suffered so many violent attacks and home demolitions over recent years and long to be left to live peaceably on their land.
Lord, in your mercy…

Late on Thursday, the 12th of January, extremists wrote racist slurs in Hebrew on the stone walls of the Armenian Church in occupied East Jerusalem. The High Presidencia Committee of the Palestinian Authority for the affairs of Churches reported that the graffiti threatened death to Arabs, Armenians and Christians. They also warned that the racist expressions of far-right Israeli government ministers are giving rise to an outbreak of ‘hate speech and ugly provocation’.

•    Lord, you warn us in your word that, ‘the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness’. We pray for wisdom to learn how to bridle our tongues. We pray for those in positions of authority that they will take care to avoid enflaming violence through their public declarations.
Lord, in your mercy…

•    We join with the World Council of Churches in their prayers for the countries of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Yemen.
Lord, in your mercy..

Wave of Prayer

12.1.23

Next Tuesday Kumi Now will consider Israel’s policy of denying building permits to Palestinians living in East Jerusalem and the West Bank. As a result Palestinians have to build homes and businesses that are under constant threat of demolition or confiscation.

  • Lord, we pray that international organisations and governments will challenge Israel over its policy of denying building permits to Palestinians, dispossessing them and encouraging illegal Israeli settlers to take their land and resources.
    Lord in your mercy…

Pope Francis paid tribute to his predecessor Pope Benedict XVI on Thursday, the 5th of January, in a funeral attended by about fifty thousand mourners in St Peter’s Square. 

Pope Emeritus Benedict had resigned from the papacy due to ill health in 2013. After the funeral he was buried in the crypt under St Peter’s Basilica.

  • Lord, we give thanks for the life and devoted service of Pope Benedict XVI. We join with those who mourn his passing and say together, ‘Father, into your hands we commend his spirit.’
    Lord, in your mercy…

The United Nations’ Security Council held an emergency meeting on Thursday, the 5th of January, to discuss Ben-Gvir’s recent provocative walk around the Al Aqsa Compound, flanked by Israeli security guards. The UN stated that his first public act since taking office, ‘reflected a lack of commitment to existing historical and legal status of the holy sites in Jerusalem and could further destabilise the fragile situation in the occupied Palestinian Territories.’

Lord, we pray that the new Israeli government will take heed of the international condemnation of its first days in office. We pray that the government will not deliberately heighten tensions and spark violence through further provocative actions.
Lord, in your mercy…

B’Tselem reported that the Israeli authorities have just given notice that a thousand residents of Masafer Yatta in the South Hebron Hills will soon receive orders of forcible eviction from their homes. Their land has been designated as ‘Firing Zone 918’ and is a closed military zone. B’Tselem has written to the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court in the Hague to protest that this forcible transfer of protected persons in occupied territory constitutes a war crime.

  • Lord, we cry out to you for the residents of Masafer Yatta who face constant threats and ongoing violence from  the Israeli authorities. We pray for urgent intervention from international organisations to allow them to remain living peaceably on their land.
    Lord, in your mercy…

The Israeli army shot Adam Ayyad, a 15-year old Palestinian teenager in the chest and killed him on Tuesday, the 3rd of January. The pre-dawn raid, involving dozens of armoured vehicles and many fully-armed Israeli soldiers led to confrontations with young Palestinians at Dheisheh refugee camp in Bethlehem. Since the start of the year three Palestinians have already been killed as a result of the continuing campaign of intensified Israeli raids that have lasted almost a year.

  • Lord, we pray for Adam’s family and friends as they now grieve over the loss of his young life. We pray for an end to the extrajudicial killings and the targeting of Palestinian children by Israeli forces.
    Lord in your mercy..

The vicar for migrants and asylum seekers in the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem, Fr Nikodemus Schnakel, held a special early morning Christmas service for the Indian community in St Catherine’s Chapel at the Basilica of the Nativity in Bethlehem. Although the community had to gather at 4:30am and worshipped in the dark, due to a power cut, there were no complaints as they were so happy to celebrate Christmas in Bethlehem.

  • Lord Jesus, our good shepherd, lead us and guide us to welcome all who leave their homeland whether on pilgrimage or fleeing from persecution or poverty. We pray especially for the many migrants and asylum seekers who face so much fear and uncertainty in their lives.
    Lord, in your mercy..

Security camera footage caught two young men wearing religious Jewish clothing desecrating more than thirty graves at the Protestant Cemetery on Mount Zion during the afternoon of Sunday, the 1st of January. This act of vandalism has shocked church leaders around the world and they have called on Israel to crack down on extemist Israeli groups.

  • Lord, we pray for an end to the frequent attacks against the Arab Christian community and their property by extremist groups. We pray that the Israeli police will thoroughly investigate the vandalism at the Protestant Cemetery and hold to account those responsible for the criminal acts. Lord, in your mercy..
  • We join with the World Council of Churches in their prayers for the countries of Iran, Iraq and Syria.
    Lord, in your mercy…

Wave of Prayer

 5th of January 2023

Next week’s Kumi Now will consider the difficulties Palestinians experience trying to run businesses or find jobs living under the Israeli occupation. So many restrictions and barriers prevent Palestinian businessmen, entrepreneurs and farmers from gaining access to the global marketplace.

  • Lord, we pray for courage for Palestinians to continue to seek markets for their products despite the discrimination they face living under the Israeli occupation. We pray that other countries around the world will support them in their efforts to continue their trade.
    Lord, in your mercy..

Sabeel Jerusalem extends its warmest good wishes for the New Year to all its friends around the world. We echo the words of a prayer written by Palestinian theologians for a liturgy given for ‘Jerusalem: the City of Justice and Peace, 2013’.

‘Teach us to walk the way that leads to life,

Transform our grief into determination,

Our tears into action and our acts into a just peace.’

Friends of Sabeel, Germany issued an Advent Call through their churches and the media. The call raises the question of how Palestinians can respond to the ultra-right wing government now elected in Israel with plans to annex the West Bank. It argues that the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions policy should not be dismissed out of hand as ‘anti-semitic’,but may now be one way to bring pressure to bear on Israel to stop oppressing the Palestinian people.

  • Lord, we pray that many Germans will listen to the Advent Call and consider giving their support to Palestinians living under the harsh conditions of the Israeli occupation. We pray that people in Israel and Palestine will start to  learn to live together in peace, security and respect for one another.
    Lord in your mercy..

Nora Abu Nab, a member of the Palestinian national kickboxing team, won the gold medal in her class at the Asian Kickboxing Championship held in Bangkok on Monday, the 19th of December. She will be the first Palestinian athlete to qualify for the World Martial Arts Games to be held in Riyadh in 2023.

  • Lord, we give thanks for Nora’s athletic skills and dedication to her chosen sport. We are encouraged by seeing Palestinians competing at world class levels, despite the restrictions imposed on them by the Israeli occupation.
    Lord, in your mercy…

Canadian Friends of Sabeel welcomed their new Executive Director, Rana Atie on Thursday, the 1st of December. Rana has twenty years of experience in Applied Communications, Public Relations and Project Management. At the tender age of fourteen Rana discovered that her grandparents were forced to flee from Haifa during the Nakba. Since that time her love for her family and her desire for social justice have formed her into a passionate activist working in solidarity with Palestinians.

  • Lord, we give thanks for Rana Atie and pray for your guidance and wisdom for her as she takes on this new responsibility at Canadian Friends of Sabeel.
    Lord, in your mercy..

In the early hours of Tuesday, the 24th of December, Israeli settlers seized a plot of land which belongs to the Greek Orthodox Monastery in Silwan, in occupied East Jerusalem. They fenced off the land and installed surveillance cameras under Israeli police protection. When Silwan residents rushed to try and stop the land confiscation, they were assaulted by the police.

  • Lord, we pray that international governments and organisations will challenge Israel for violating international law by allowing settlers to seize more and more Palestinian land. We continue to pray for the Palestinian residents of East Jerusalem living under constant threat of expulsion from their homes.
    Lord, in your mercy…
  • We join with the World Council of Churches in their prayers for the countries of Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon and Palestine.
    Lord, in your mercy…

Sabeel Wave of Prayer

29th of December 2022

This week’s Kumi Now focused on the launch of Xavier Abu Eid’s book entitled, ‘Rooted in Palestine: Palestinian Christians and the Struggle for National Liberation 1917-2004’. The book charts the crucial role Palestinian Christians have played through the years of the British Mandate, the Nakba and the Israeli occupation and marks the dwindling numbers of Christians now living in Palestine.

  • Merciful Lord, we pray for our brothers and sisters and their important witness in Palestine. We pray that you will continue to reveal the light of your presence to Christians and guide their feet into the way of peace in the Holy Land.
    Lord, in your mercy..
  • Gracious Lord, we give you glory as Christians in Palestine, the Middle East and around the world celebrate the coming of your son, born in Bethlehem, a baby lying in a manger, Christ our Saviour.
    Lord, in your mercy..

Two-year-old Faris Banura and his sister Maya from the village of Beit Sahour, traditional place of the shepherds field, near Bethlehem – died on Wednesday the 21st of December. The death was as a result of inhaling a dangerous pesticide that was spread in a different apartment in their residential building.

  • Lord, our faith is weak, help us understand this tragedy. We pray for your spirit to comfort the parents and friends of the children as they grief for Maya and Faris.
    Lord, in your mercy.. 

Ahmed Daraghmeh a 23-year-old footballer in the West Bank Premier League Club of Thaqufi Tulkarem was shot and killed by Israeli soldiers on Thursday, the 22nd of December in Nablus. It is not yet clear whether he was involved in clashes between Palestinians and Israeli soldiers who were escorting a group of settlers visiting Joseph’s Tomb.

  • Lord, we pray that the Israeli authorities will restore calm to flashpoint areas in Nablus and elsewhere where settler groups, protected by soldiers, are provoking unrest and violence.
    Lord, in your mercy..

Nasser Abu Hmeid, a 50-year-old Palestinian political prisoner died of lung cancer in Israeli custody on Tuesday, the 20th of December. Abu Hmeid was a leader in the Fatah movement and had been imprisoned for his part in armed resistance in the First and Second Intifadas. A Palestinian prisoner rights’ group maintain that his death occurred after months of medical negligence following his diagnosis in August 2021. 

  • Lord, we pray for the family of Nasser as they grieve his loss, especially his mother Latefa who was only given permission to visit her son once he has slipped into a coma,  just before he died. We pray that the Israeli Prison Service will release his body for burial and that they will investigate reports of medical negligence in his case.
    Lord, in your mercy…

Palestinian schoolchildren from the village of Tuqu’, southeast of Bethlehem, were prevented from travelling along the main road to their school by Israeli soldiers on Wednesday, the 21st of December. Armed soldiers blocked the road so that the children were forced to take a much longer circuitous route to school.

  • Lord, we pray for an end to the harassment of Palestinian school children by Israeli soldiers. We continue to pray for these children growing up under the occupation, who have to cope with obstruction, checkpoints, hostile attacks from settlers, tear gas and sound bombs, as part of their daily routine.
    Lord, in your mercy..

The Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem, Theophilos III spoke out at the Christmas tree lighting at Jerusalem’s Jaffa Gate on Saturday, the 17th of December. Addressing a crowd from the balcony of the Imperial Hotel in the Old City, he warned that Christians in the Holy Land have become the target of repeated attacks by radical Israeli groups in a deliberate attempt to expel them.

  • Lord, we echo the words of the Patriarch in our prayer: ‘We long for peace and so let us not rend this fabric of our historic common life that has provided room enough down the ages for all who call the Holy Land their home.’
    Lord in your mercy..
  • We join with the World Council of Churches in their prayers for the countries of Japan, North Korea and South Korea.
    Lord, in your mercy..

Wave of Prayer

22nd of December 2022

The focus of this week’s Kumi Now session was the launch of Rev. Naim Ateek’s booklet on Religious Extremism.  The booklet is a helpful and pertinent resource at a time when politicians with extremist religious views are about to take office under the newly formed Israeli government.

  • Lord Jesus, Immanuel, when we are fearful of the darkness all around us, help us to turn towards your light. Our Redeemer, we ask for your help in troubled times and trust ourselves to your care.
    Lord, in your mercy..
  • Lord, we give thanks for the joyful occasion of the Sabeel Christmas Dinner on Friday, the 16th of December, when Sabeel hosted 180 guests. May this time of celebration encourage and strengthen all those working to restore justice and peace to their land.
    Lord, in your mercy…

On Thursday, the 15th of December, the United Nations passed a resolution in favour of the Palestinian people’s sovereignty over their natural resources. The UN stated,’ the Assembly demanded that Israel, the occupying power, cease the exploitation, damage, cause of loss or depletion and endangerment of the natural resources in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem and the occupied Syrian Golan’.

  • Lord, we pray that the international community will compel Israel to implement international law and to ensure the freedom of the Palestinian people to benefit from their natural resources.
    Lord, in your mercy…

Israeli settlers attacked a school in Urif, a Palestinian village south of Nablus in the early hours of Thursday morning, the 15th of December. Surveillance cameras showed that about forty settlers stole into the village under cover of darkness and hurled stones at the local secondary boys’ school, smashing the solar panels used to supply the school with electricity.

  • Lord, we pray for an end to the wrecking activities of the Israeli settlers. We pray that the Israeli authorities will stop turning a blind eye to the frequent outbreaks of settler violence and vandalism directed against Palestinian communities.
    Lord, in your mercy…

Sama Aweideh received the Franco-German Prize for Human Rights and the Rule of Law in Jerusalem on Wednesday, the 14th of December. For decades Sama has campaigned to ensure respect for women’s rights in Palestinian society. She was one of the founders of the Palestinian Federation of Women’s Action Committees in1978. She also set up the Women’s Studies Center in East Jerusalem in 1992.

  • Lord, we give thanks for the international recognition of Sama Aweideh’s human right’s work and for her determination to bring in legislation to help protect Palestinian women from gender-based violence.
    Lord, in your mercy..

The US has called for accountability from Israel after the recent killing of 16-year-old Jana Zakarna during an Israeli military raid in Jenin. An initial probe into the incident has shown that Jana was most likely killed  by an Israeli Border Police sniper as soldiers  were attempting to arrest three Palestinians. Her family stated that Jana had gone up onto the roof to retrieve her cat when the shooting suddenly started. She was shot in the head and chest and died on the rooftop.

  • Lord, we pray for Jana’s family as they grieve over the violent end to her young life. We pray that the Israeli military will investigate this incident fully and that all soldiers will be held to account for unauthorized killings. We pray too for an end to the massive Israeli military operation of nightly raids, which has led to the deaths and imprisonment of so many Palestinians in recent months.
    Lord, in your mercy…
  • We join with the World Council of Churches in their prayers for the countries of China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau.
    Lord, in your mercy…

Wave of Prayer

15th of December 2022

Sabeel will be hosting the launch of Don Wagner’s new book during next week’s Kumi Now session on Tuesday, the 13th of December. His book is entitled, ‘Glory to God in the Lowest. Journey to an Unholy Land’.

  • Lord, we give thanks for Don Wagner’s lifelong commitment to non-violent activism working for justice and peace for Palestinians. We pray that his book of memoirs will inspire many others to come and see for themselves how Palestinians are forced to live under Israeli occupation.
    Lord, in your mercy..

Last week Israeli soldiers broke into the Al Lubban Secondary Girls’ School in the early hours of the morning. They tore down the Palestinian flag and replaced it with an Israeli flag. Apparently this was not the first time they had torn down the Palestinian flag, however it was the first time they had hoisted an Israeli flag. 

  • Merciful Lord, we cry out to you as we see more frequent acts of harassment and violence inflicted on Palestinian communities by Israeli soldiers and settlers. We pray for an end to the Israeli occupation.
    Lord, in your mercy..
  • Lord, we pray for the preparations for the Sabeel Christmas Dinner to be held on Friday, the 16th of December. We pray that old and new friends of Sabeel will be blessed by taking part in this joyous occasion.
    Lord, in your mercy..

The third Annual Conference on Gender Justice took place in Ramallah on Wednesday, the 7th of December. The conference is one of the many events over a period of sixteen days sponsored by the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land.The various events seek to promote gender justice and equality by developing strategies for ways to promote women’s rights. It also aims to encourage women to lead and participate in decision-making processes.

  • Lord, we thank you for the conference and the series of events held in Ramallah. We pray that women in Palestine may grow in confidence and dignity as they find their voice and engage more fully with their communities. Lord, in your mercy..

The Israeli authorities have withheld entry visas for United Nations staff. There are twenty international employees in the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs,(OCHA), who monitor Israeli human rights violations in the occupied Palestinian territories. Fifteen staff had to leave in 2020 and since then requests for visas or visa renewals have gone unanswered. A UN spokesman has warned that the blocking of visas is already impacting OCHA’s work in planning the humanitarian response for 2023.

  • Lord, we pray that the visa applications for the UN Human Rights’ staff will be granted by the Israeli authorities and that the UN will bring pressure to bear for any further acts of non-compliance by the Israeli authorities.
    Lord, in your mercy..

About two hundred Palestinian Christians living in Gaza have been denied permits to worship at the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem this Christmas. There are more than a thousand Christians in Gaza, most of whom are Greek Orthodox and some are Roman Catholic. When Christian families apply for travel permits the Israeli authorities do not always grant them to all family members, so they cannot worship and celebrate together.

  • Lord, we pray for an end to the Israeli blockade of Gaza. We long for a time when Palestinians can once again move around their country and worship freely with their family and friends.
    Lord, in your mercy…
  • We join with the World Council of Churches in their prayers for the countries of Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam.
    Lord, in your mercy..

Wave Of Prayer

8th of December 2022

Next week Kumi Now will consider the right of return for Palestinians.  The UN Resolution 194 was passed on the 11th of December, 1948. It stated, ‘refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbours should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date.’ After seventy years Palestinians are still waiting on that earliest practicable date.

  • Lord, we pray for an end to the Israeli occupation. We pray for a shared future for the fulfilment of the Palestinian right of return and a just and peaceful co-existence with all the people living in the Holy Land. Lord, in your mercy..

Issa Amro, a human rights’ activist from Hebron, organized a solidarity visit for Israeli activists to come and visit Palestinian families who have suffered attacks from Israeli settlers. During the visit one of the Israeli activists was attacked by an Israeli soldier. Issa was arrested for filming this attack, charged with obstructing the soldiers and sent away from his home in Hebron for a week of house arrest. 

  • Lord, we pray for Issa Amro and his work to support his local community which is under constant harassment and threat from settlers and Israeli soldiers. We pray for the city of Hebron which has been transformed by the  Israeli occupation into a battleground, dominated by a climate of fear and terror. Lord, in your mercy..

Last week the UN General Assembly approved a resolution to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Nakba, with a special event to be held on the 15th of May 2023.

The UN Envoy to the Middle East, Tor Wennesland, warned that tensions in both Israel and Palestine were, ‘reaching a boiling point’. This year is set to be the deadliest for Palestine in the West Bank since the UN first started recording deaths 2005.

  • Lord, we pray that the UN and other international human rights’ organisations will take urgent action to call a halt to the escalating violence and oppression inflicted on Palestinians by the Israeli occupation. Lord, in your mercy..

As temperatures rise due to climate change Palestinians are experiencing more acute water shortages. The Israeli authorities now control more than 85% of water resources in the occupied West Bank. Palestinians are forced to buy water from Israel at high prices.

According to Amnesty International Palestinians living in the West Bank can only access 73 litres of water daily, which is less than the internationally recommended rate of 100 litres. This compares to 240 litres of water for the average Israeli citizen. While in Gaza residents have to draw from an over-exploited coastal aquifer which is now polluted.

  • Lord, we pray that the Israeli authorities will change their policies to steward your precious resource of water in an equitable way to bring life and health to all the residents of Palestine/Israel. Lord, in your mercy..

Friends of Sabeel North America are calling on Christian leaders across the United Staes to commit their congregation to Preach Palestine during Advent.

  • Lord, during this Advent season of reflection and repentance help us to pray for Palestinian people living under the Israeli occupation. We pray that they will, ‘experience the joy, justice and peace of Christ’s liberating reign, a very real light in the present darkness’. Lord, in your mercy..

The third Annual Conference on Gender Justice took place in Ramallah on Wednesday, the 7th of December. The conference is one of the many events over a period of sixteen days sponsored by the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land.The various events seek to promote gender equality and to encourage women to lead and participate in decision-making processes.

  • Lord, we thank you for the conference and pray that women in Palestine may grow in confidence and dignity as they find their voices and engage more fully with their communities. Lord, in your mercy..
  • We join with the World Council of Churches in their prayers for the countries of Myanmar and Thailand. Lord in your mercy…

Wave of Prayer

1.12.22

Next week Kumi Now will be marking Human Rights Day which is celebrated annually around the world on the 10th of December. On this day in 1948 the UN adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. For decades human rights abuses have been documented in Israel/Palestine by the UN, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, but the violations are intensifying.

•    Lord, we pray that the human rights of all will be respected in the Holy Land. We pray for an end to the apartheid regime of separation and discrimination between Israelis and Palestinians.
Lord, in your mercy..

Shadi Khoury attended a court hearing on Wednesday, the 23rd of November. His family were hoping for his release to return home and celebrate his grandmother’s 89th birthday on the following day. Sadly, this was not to be. His grandmother, Samia writes, ‘Despite the judge’s ruling later on in the day to release Shadi and the other children for ‘house arrest’ the Attorney General appealed against the judge’s decision. Shadi’s lawyer succeeded in his appeal against the ruling of the Prosecutor and Shadi is now under house arrest til the end of his trial.

•    Lord, we hold Shadi and all Palestinian children in Israeli military custody before you in our prayers. We pray too for their families, suffering due to their absence from home and concerned for their well-being. Lord, we ask you to comfort and strengthen them so that their light and hope is not quenched.
Lord, in your mercy..

Friends of Sabeel North America is holding a ten day witness visit to Israel in support of the Palestinian civil society organisations which have recently been raided and closed down by the Israeli authorities. The group will remain in the country from the 26th of November until the 6th of December.

•    Lord, we pray that this Fosna visit will be an encouragement to those seeking to support Palestinian communities. We pray that the testimonies heard will then be passed on to  probe the conscience of the wider world.
Lord, in your mercy..

During the Advent season Sabeel UK will be hosting a four-part Bible series on Sunday evenings. The series is entitled ‘Challenging Apartheid’ and well-known speakers have been invited to contribute their thoughts on various aspects of the Israeli regime.

•    Lord, we pray that the study of your word will guide and inspire those who long to shine a light on the oppression suffered by Palestinians.
Lord, in your mercy..

Violent incidents in Israel this week have brought suffering on the same day to the families of two teenagers, one Israeli and the other Palestinian. Aryah Shechopek, a 15-year-old yeshiva student was killed by one of the bomb explosions carried out in Jerusalem early on Wednesday, the 23rd of November. While Ahmed Shehadeh was a sixteen-year-old Palestinian caught up in the clashes at Joseph’s tomb in Nablus. He was one of two Palestinians shot dead by Israeli soldiers while they were protecting a monthly pilgrimage of Orthodox Jewish worshippers to the shrine.

•    Lord, we pray for the families and friends of Aryah and Ahmed as they grieve for the loss of their lives. We pray for an end to the vortex of violence in Israel which is swallowing up so many young lives, both Israeli and Palestinian.
Lord, in your mercy..

Friends of Sabeel Australia hosted Vera Baboun to give a talk on Bethlehem on Saturday, the 19th of November. Vera held office as the first female Mayor of Bethlehem from 2012-17. Friends of Sabeel France will hold a final Zoom event entitled, ‘Jerusalem and Archaeology’  by Father Jean-Jacques on Sunday, the 4th of December.

•    Lord, we give thanks for the work of Sabeel in Jerusalem and among the Friends of Sabeel groups in many parts of the world. We ask for your guidance and support for all those working and praying for an end to the Israeli occupation.
Lord, in your mercy..

On Wednesday, the 23rd of November Israeli forces demolished a recently built Palestinian primary school in the Masafer Yatta region of the South Hebron Hills. Residents in the area continue to face the threat of forced displacement as the Israeli army have designated their land as a military firing zone. Witnesses report that the Israeli army used sound bombs to scare the pupils and staff and to make them leave the building before demolishing it. It had only just been built with the help of European funding to enable twenty two children from four villages to attend without having to walk long distances to reach other schools.

•    Merciful Lord, we cry out to you for the young children in Masafer Yatta who have just witnessed their new school demolished before their eyes. We pray for them now as they walk long distances in an unsafe area to attend school.
Lord, in your mercy..

•    We join with the World Council of Churches in their prayers for the countries of Brunei, Malaysia and Singapore.
Lord, in your mercy…