'Peace within your walls': grief for the Holy Land

Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash
The Uniting Church in Australia joins with the World Council of Churches in expressing its concern and grief at the escalating violence in Israel and Palestine and the rising toll of people killed and injured.

In a statement issued this week, Acting General Secretary of the World Council of Churches Rev. Prof. Dr Ioan Sauca urged all parties to put down their arms and work to address the injustices that sustain the recurrent cycles of violence.

“We lament every one of the precious lives already lost, Palestinians and Israelis, in Gaza, in Ashkelon, near Lod, and elsewhere. We share in the grief of the families and communities whose dear ones have been ripped away."

“We appeal urgently to all parties to step back from the brink of even more deadly and destructive conflict."

The Patriarchs and Heads of Churches of Jerusalem have also expressed their profound concern over the recent violence in particular actions undermining the safety of worshipers. In a statement, they said recent violent events in East Jerusalem “violate the sanctity of the people of Jerusalem and of Jerusalem as the City of Peace”.

The Uniting Church Assembly echoes these calls for an urgent end to the violence and for the peace process to resume. We believe that international action is the most effective way of achieving a just and long-lasting peace in this part of the world.

The Uniting Church has long expressed a desire for peace and justice in the Holy Land, and we join with Christians and people of faith across the world in urging all parties to step back from the brink of further deadly and destructive conflict.

We encourage members of the Uniting Church to pray for an end to violence and for peace and justice to prevail.

You may like to use the following in your prayers:

Pray for the peace of Jerusalem:
“May those who love you be secure.
May there be peace within your walls
and security within your citadels.”
For the sake of my family and friends,
I will say, “Peace be within you.”
For the sake of the house of the Lord our God,
I will seek your prosperity.
Psalm 122:6-9

Read more

World Council of Churches, 12th May, WCC laments “precious lives lost”, abhors violence affecting places of worship in Holy Land

World Council of Churches, 11th May, Patriarchs and Heads of Jerusalem Churches express concern for Al-Aqsa Mosque worshippers and Sheikh Jarrah families

Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem, 10th May, Latin Patriarchate reacts to recent violence in Jerusalem

2015 Resolution of the Uniting Church Assembly regarding Palestine