The Palestine-Israel Ecumenical Forum of the World Council of Churches writes to invite you to send your prayers and wishes for Advent and Christmas in Bethlehem 2010.
For some, Christmas means spending time in a warm, safe atmosphere with family and friends. In a call for prayers that Pax Christi has initiated, they remind us, however, that this happiness cannot be shared by all people around the globe. Pax Christi notes that "Christmas celebrations in Israel and Palestine occur in a very difficult and instable climate". The call goes on to describe how "hope remains a keyword in the life of the citizens of Bethlehem, the birthplace of Jesus Christ, city of peace" and how "individuals and groups keep up the search for non-violent routes that lead to peace and justice for both peoples".
Since December 2000 Pax Christi has been sending out peace messages to friends in Bethlehem. PIEF endorses and joins this call and hopes member churches of the World Council of Churches will send out wishes and prayers for justice and peace to Bethlehem.
Messages can be e-mailed to the Arab Educational Institute at the following address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Read all messages at http://www.aeicenter.org/ and http://www.paxchristi.net/ [You can read the 2009 messages here; some might provide ideas for use in your own congregation or group's prayer vigils.]
With prayers for a just peace in Palestine and Israel,
Yours in Christ
Public witness programme
Special focus on the Middle East
World Council of Churches