Archbishops call for prayers for peace in the Holy Land

Wednesday October 11th 2023


Archbishop John McDowell and Archbishop Michael Jackson have asked all members of the Church of Ireland to pray for peace in the Holy Land, following the outbreak of renewed conflict. 

The Archbishops’ statement – provided in full below – accompanies the release of emergency humanitarian funds to our sister church in the immediate region, the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem:

The rapidly escalating and degenerating situation in Israel and Palestine awakens within us our deep compassion for our brothers and sisters of all faiths in the Land of the Holy One.  Where lives are lost through military attack and response, humanity in its entirety is diminished.  We all grieve.

The Patriarchs and Heads of Churches in Jerusalem have called for peace and justice amidst unfolding violence.  They have unequivocally condemned any acts that target civilians, regardless of their nationality, ethnicity or faith.  They have called on the international community to redouble its efforts to mediate a just and lasting peace in the Holy Land.

The Church of Ireland Bishops’ Appeal for World Aid and Development is releasing €10,000 (equivalent to £8,650) in emergency funds to the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem.  The Diocese includes 7,000 Anglicans worshipping within 28 congregations in Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, Syria, and Jordan.  It is responsible for more than 30 institutions, including hospitals, schools, clinics, rehabilitation centres, guesthouses, and retirement homes.  The Diocese runs Al Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza which provides medical care and support to all people, regardless of their faith or ethnicity.

We urge the people of the Church of Ireland to pray for peace in the Land of the Holy One and pray for wisdom for those in positions of authority to work towards an end to all violence.  We uphold to God in prayer all who are affected by the current conflict.  All human life is the gift of God.  The Church of Ireland, in its daily prayers, prays for people suffering in conflict, those who seek to bring care and relief, and the peace of the world.

A Prayer for the Peace of the World – from the Book of Common Prayer

Almighty God, from whom all thoughts of truth and peace proceed; Kindle, we pray thee, in every heart the true love of peace; and guide with thy pure and peaceable wisdom those who take counsel for the nations of the earth; that in tranquillity thy kingdom may go forward, till the earth is filled with the knowledge of thy love; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

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