- Palestinian man pouring water for sheeps from a water cistern reconstructed during a joint DCA and YMCA project assisting the vulnerable communities in Area C in the occupied Palestinian territories.
- The Lutheran World Federation’s Augusta Victoria Hospital operates a Mobile Mammography Unit which strives to identify women with breast cancer at an early stage so they may be referred to AVH for treatment with better outcomes. Photo by M. Brown
- A pediatric dialysis patient at the Lutheran World Federation’s Augusta Victoria Hospital proudly displays the coloring she has done as part of the psycho-social care facilitated for children in the hospital’s Specialized Child Care Center. Photo by K.Brown
- A trainee at the Lutheran World Federation’s Vocational Training Program concentrates on his instructor’s advice for learning the important skill of drafting. Photo by K. Brown
- Students in the East Jerusalem village of Bethany proudly receive school supplies distributed by the Lutheran World Federation. Photo by B. Moyer
- As part of its commitment to protect the rights of those most marginalized, the LWF promotes access to educational loans and grants awarded to Palestinian youth, such as Dr. Maysa’a Sea’fan, who received a scholarship to study medicine at Al-Quds University and has become one of three female obstetricians/gynecologists serving in Hebron. Photo by B. Moyer
February 24, 2017 –
24 February 2017
ACT Palestine Forum Prayer Focus:
Settler violence endangers the lives of Palestinians, but also wreaks havoc on the land, and destroys or endangers olive trees which are often many hundreds of years old.
“Israeli civilians have perpetrated various forms of violence against Palestinians in the Occupied Territories, damaging their lands, their persons and their property. In recent years, settlers have carried out violent acts under the slogan “price tag.” B'Tselem has documented many such acts including the blocking of roads, throwing stones at cars and houses, making incursions into Palestinian villages and land, torching fields, uprooting trees, and other damage to property.”
The earth is the Lord’s and all that is in it,
the world, and those who live in it;
for he has founded it on the seas,
and established it on the rivers.
“Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb, through the middle of the street of the city. On either side of the river is the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, producing its fruit each month; and the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations.”
Leader: Holy God, in the beginning you created the heavens and the earth
All: And you called it good.
L: The earth is yours, and all that is in it,
A: The world, and those who live in it.
L: And yet, through human greed, carelessness, and violence,
A: Your good creation is destroyed.
L: Today we pray for the land called holy, caught in an unholy conflict.
A: We pray for Palestinian communities threatened by settlements and settler violence.
L: We pray for farmers who cannot reach their olive groves, for families whose land has been stolen, and for children who live in fear of attacks.
A: We pray for the land itself, for water, for animals, for the environment which suffers after fifty years of military occupation.
L: And we pray for the olive trees: proud symbol of Palestine, strong and resilient, steadfast and true, bearing fruit even in the harshest conditions.
A: Give us the sumud (صمود) of the olive trees. Strengthen our commitment to peace and justice for Palestine. Keep us steadfast in prayer, in advocacy, and in action. Like a tree standing by the water—we shall not be moved.
"The Olive Tree" by Rima Nasir Tarazi
Opportunities for Advocacy:
“The core task of all good spirituality is to teach us to “cooperate” with what God already wants to do and has already begun to do through us.” - Fr. Richard Rohr
Listed here are a few sources that invite you to advocate an end to settler violence against Palestinians and the land:
Yesh Din Foundation: http://www.yesh-din.org/en/category/settler-violence/
Al Haq: http://www.alhaq.org/component/acesearch/search?query=settler+violence
Find a printable version of this month's prayers here: 24 Feb 2017 Prayer Vigil
January 24, 2017 –
ACT Palestine Forum Prayers
24 January 2017
“Stop home demolitions and forcible transfer of communities as a new beginning for 2017”
The ACT Palestine prayers for 24th of January – 23rd of February are written to focus on demolitions, displacement and forcible transfer in East Jerusalem and Area C of the West Bank.
2016 was a tragic record year when it comes to demolitions of homes, latrines, solar panels and water cisterns in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. The UN never before counted as many demolitions by the Israeli military - taking place in direct violation of the basic principles of international humanitarian law.
2017 so far brings no hope. The year started with the same intense demolition pace. Of the nearly 100 demolitions and confiscations that have already taken place in 2017, only about half were provided humanitarian aid to alleviate their suffering. This leaves dozens of families with no homes, shelter, water and electricity in a very cold winter and increases the risk of forcible transfer. It is jeopardizing the very existence of these communities.
Our commitment is to stand up for and with these communities - find ways to stop such basic violation of rights against fellow humans and try to live in peace no matter what religion people belong to.
We call for justice and peace.
We remember the Palestinians who have lost their homes, water cisterns, solar panels, and other infrastructure to unjust demolition orders. We ask for the courage to name these injustices and the steadfastness to pursue their end. As the number of demolitions continues to increase, move us to action, both immediate and long-term. Help us to support our Palestinian brothers and sisters by speaking out and standing up to the evils of the occupation. Strengthen us to defend those whose homes and lands are being confiscated and sustain us in the pursuit of justice.
In Jesus’ name,
“Lord, Whose Love In Humble Service”
Lord, whose love in humble service
bore the weight of human need,
who upon the cross, forsaken,
worked your mercy’s perfect deed;
we, your servants, bring the worship
not of voice alone, but heart,
consecrating to your purpose
every gift which you impart.
Still your children wander homeless,
still the hungry cry for bread.
Still the captives long for freedom,
still in grief we mourn our dead.
As you, Lord, in deep compassion,
healed the sick and freed the soul,
by your Spirit send your power
to our world to make it whole.
As we worship, grant us vision,
till your love’s revealing light
in its height and depth and greatness
dawns upon our quickened sight,
making known the needs and burdens
your compassion bids us bear,
stirring us to ardent service,
your abundant life to share.
Action to take:
- Call on your government to denounce the continued demolitions across Area C and in East Jerusalem and take action to protect communities from forcible transfer.
- Call on the European Union and its member states to start claiming financial compensation from Israel for destroyed and confiscated aid.
More information about demolitions:
BBC Middle East