Announcement from the Rt. Rev. Douglas J. Fisher
As the inhumanity continues...
November 8, 2023

I write again to all the faithful of Western Massachusetts as the inhumanity continues in Israel and Gaza. The hostages have not been returned to their loved ones in Israel. Palestinian civilians continue to face the weapons of war. Like you, I am feeling the cries of the suffering in my bones. As faithful followers of Jesus, we hold on to the dream--God's dream--even as we are confronted with the nightmare. We proclaim that love is stronger than death and that it is possible to love even an enemy. In times like ours, these elemental aspects of our faith feel like a mirage. But God is with humanity. And God is for us.

Precious in the sight of the Lord
    is the death of his faithful ones.
Psalm 116:15

It is important to center ourselves, our souls and our bodies in the goodness of God's creation and in the living Word. I commend to you the words of our Presiding Bishop, the Most Rev. Michael B. Curry and the Executive Council of The Episcopal Church. And, I remind you that our support can be material as we support the healing ministries of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem. The Episcopal Public Policy Network enables us to use our voices for peace. I encourage you to make yours heard. I join you in unceasing prayer.

Faithfully in Christ,
The Rt. Rev. Douglas J. Fisher
Bishop of Western Massachusetts
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Olive branch Israel
Credit: Aaron Ovadia

God of peace, we pray for the people of Palestine and Israel in these perilous and dangerous times.
For all who are fearful for the safety of their loved ones and themselves, we pray that the assurance of unfailing love, even in the midst of danger, settles upon them. Shelter them from despair and protect them from harm.
For all who are wounded, we pray they find healing.
For all who have died, we pray they find rest.
For all who grieve, we pray they find comfort.
For leaders on all sides, we pray for a renewed will to lay down arms, for the strength to put the grievances and wrongs suffered by their people to rest, and for the conviction to embrace a path of reconciliation and peace that preserves the rights and dignity of all of your children.
God of mercy, help us to remember there is no border that can separate us from your great love and protection, no stone that can sound the well of your deep mercy.
God of justice, we pray with hopeful hearts that your beloved children of the Holy Land will be spared a future of sustained violence and unrest and that a recognition of the humanity of all people will prevail.
We ask all this in the name of your Son, Jesus. Amen.

American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem
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