Greetings from the steering committee of the Mennonite Palestine Israel Network. Much has happened since our last email update, and so we are eager to check in with you all. We will pass along an additional update in the coming week reporting on our recent steering committee meeting, but in this email we wanted to focus on the distressing situation in Gaza and pass along some ideas for prayer, resources, and ways to get involved.
Jewish Voice for Peace has organized an open letter and petition you can sign that says that “only by ending the occupation, which is funded by unconditional US military aid and diplomatic support, and embracing equality can this terrible bloodshed end”: http://org.salsalabs.com/o/301/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=16061.
U.S. Campaign to End the Occupation has set up a web section to highlight ways to learn more and take action: www.endtheoccupation.org/gazaunderattack. On it you can find action alerts and opportunities, resources for local organizing and staying informed.
Below is a list of additional resources for learning and action followed by a few articles of particular interest. We close the email with a prayer from the Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Center in Jerusalem. Will you join Sabeel and others from around the world as we pray for the people who live in Palestine and Israel, for those who face uncertainty, violence, and injustice, and those who yearn for the end of oppression?
- 972 Magazine: 972mag.com
- special Gaza coverage: 972mag.com/special/gaza/
- Electronic Intifada: electronicintifada.net
- special Gaza coverage: electronicintifada.net/tags/gazaunderattack
- Haaretz: haaretz.com
- International Middle East Media Center: imemc.org
- Jewish Voice for Peace: jewishvoiceforpeace.org
- special Gaza coverage: jewishvoiceforpeace.org/campaigns/end-the-bombing-end-the-occupation
- Ma’an News Agency: maannews.net/eng
- Mondoweiss: mondoweiss.net
- special Gaza coverage: mondoweiss.net/israel-palestine/gaza
- U.S. Campaign to End the Occupation: endtheoccupation.org
- special Gaza coverage: endtheoccupation.org/gazaunderattack
- Jewish Voice for Peace: “The roots of the rising violence in Gaza and Israel”, 10 July 2014, jewishvoiceforpeace.org/blog/the-roots-of-the-rising-violence-in-gaza-and-israel
- American Friends Service Committee statement: “Ending oppression to end violence: The Gaza escalation in context”, 9 July 2014, afsc.org/story/ending-oppression-end-violence-gaza-escalation-context
- Sandra Tamari: “Dismantling oppression: A cry for justice”, 8 July 2014, afsc.org/friends/dismantling-oppression-cry-justice
- Susan Abulhawa: “The searing hypocrisy of the West”, 3 July 2014, thehindu.com/opinion/lead/the-searing-hypocrisy-of-the-west/article6163918.ece
- Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology Center: “For such a time as this, what is required?” 4 July 2014, sabeel.org/events.php?eventid=363
Sabeel Wave of Prayer, July 10, 2014: sabeel.org/waveofprayer.php
This week, we wish to pray for the people who live in Palestine and Israel, for those who face uncertainty, violence, and injustice, and those who yearn for the end of oppression.
Grant Jerusalem your peace, O Lord. The past week has been one of unthinkable violence, unparalleled since the Second Intifada, in which women, children, and innocent civilians have been targeted for violence, based entirely on their ethnicity. The brutal lynching of Mohammed Abu Khdeir has been the prelude to many acts of incitement and racism in this intensely divided city, and many Palestinians fear for the safety of their families. Bring not only calm, but a true, just peace to Jerusalem and all its inhabitants. Lord in your mercy…
Grant the West Bank your peace, O Lord. Though most of the demonstrations have been occurring in Jerusalem, West Bank Palestinians have endured collective punishment and an increase in settler attacks in recent days. Put an end to the occupation that inspires such actions, and allow justice to reign in its stead. Lord in your mercy…
Grant the Gaza Strip your peace, O Lord. The 1.7 million Palestinians imprisoned in the Gaza Strip bear the brunt of Israel’s anger through incessant airstrikes, which killed at least nine people on Sunday, the complete blockade of land, air, and sea, and now a declared war under the name Operation Protective Edge. We yearn for the day when trust, love, and justice win over hatred, fear, and discrimination; let this day come quickly! Lord in your mercy…
Grant Israel your peace, O Lord. Not a peace brought about by domination, oppression, and occupation, or the implementation of discriminatory laws, or the establishment of racial hierarchy—we desire a radical, all-encompassing peace which recognizes the image of God in each individual and encourages justice to be done. The events of the past week illuminated a deeply disturbing trend of racism and incitement to violence in the Israeli public, fomented by the right-wing government and acted upon by extremist Israelis, the Israeli police force, and the military. Embolden those Israelis who speak against such injustice and hatred, and let people of every nationality and ethnicity stand together for the protection of the oppressed, freedom for the captives, and the transformative power of peace with justice. Lord in your mercy…
Inspire the people of the world, O Lord, to be peacemakers, in spite of the hatred, vitriol, and violence around them. Let them stand for justice where injustice held dominion, for hope where despair reigned, and for love where apathy keeps people silent. Lord in your mercy…