This week’s Kumi Now online gathering focused on the Nation-State Law which was passed in the Knesset on the 1st of May, 2018. Next week’s Kumi Now looks at the threats of censorship and violence suffered by Palestinian journalists, as World Press Freedom Day is remembered on Monday, the 3rd of May.
• Lord, we pray for the Palestinian-Arab and other non-Jewish citizens of Israel, who make up a fifth of the population and yet who do not enjoy the same rights as Jewish citizens. Lord, in your mercy… hear our prayers.
The West Bank city of Jericho, which last year welcomed record numbers of tourists, was devoid of visitors this year as road closures and military checkpoints made travel all but impossible. Abdulkarim Sidr, the mayor, said that the racist policy of Israeli military authorities prevented many locals and visitors from reaching tourist places. “These closures are without any known reason, and there is no clear explanation,” he said.
- Lord, in our prayers we remember all Palestinian families who were forced to wait for hours at the checkpoints leading to Jericho. We also remember all the business owners in Jericho who incurred financial losses as a result of these unjustifiable military closures. We continue to pray for an end of occupation and a stronger position from the international community to holding Israel accountable for its actions. Lord, in your mercy… hear our prayers.
On April 23, 2023 Israeli settlers under army protection assaulted Palestinian herders while grazing their cattle in the area of Ein es-Sakout in the Jordan Valley and forced them to leave. Attacks by Israeli settlers on Palestinians are commonplace, but attacks on farmers and herders are particularly intensive in the Jordan Valley area. Most of these attacks usually occur in the presence of the Israeli occupation army, which usually does nothing to stop the attacks and rather provides protection for assailants.
- Lord, we pray for the end of the Israeli military occupation that allows settlers to commit their crimes unpunished. We remember the shepherds and their livestock and all who suffer from violence as a result of the military occupation. Lord, in your mercy… hear our prayers.
On April 19th, Sabeel launched its book on antisemitism. The book titled “This Is Where We Stand: A Sabeel Reflection on Antisemitism” was in the making for the past 4 years with many participating in its making. We are thankful for all who participated in the launching especially our guests: Hana Bendcowsky, Rabbi Guy Alaluf and Fr. David Neuhaus.
· Lord we give thanks for this successful event. We pray that all people will commit to fighting all forms of hate and discrimination regardless of their identities. Lord have your spirit guide Sabeel as we continue to engage in discussions around religious discrimination. Lord, in your mercy… hear our prayers.
This week we remember the many killed during the Armenian genocide, and particularly lift up the Palestinian Armenian community as they commemorate the genocide of 1915.
· Lord, may the Armenian community around the world, and especially in Palestine, feel your presence and comfort. As we commemorate this massacre, enable us to recognize injustice wherever it occurs and empower us to act as ambassadors for peace. Lord, in your mercy… hear our prayers.
· Lord we join with the World Council of Churches in their prayers for the countries of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia. Lord, in your mercy… hear our prayers.