Jerusalem has been a focus of the world’s faith communities down the centuries, and so often throughout its history the City of Peace has been divided and torn apart by religious strife. At other times the three Abrahamic faiths have lived together in relative harmony.
The events we commemorate this Holy Week took place in a Jerusalem under hated foreign occupation, with an enforced peace policed by the Roman forces and those of King Herod. In the news this past week we have seen huge demonstrations between opposing groups of Israelis, those supporting and those contesting their Government’s proposed reform of the Supreme Court, while the Palestinian people, Muslim and Christian, continue to be marginalised. Jerusalem remains a battleground.
The leaders of the Christian churches in the Holy Land invite us to pray especially at this time for the peace of Jerusalem, for protection for all its holy places, for stability. As Psalm 122 puts it, “O pray for the peace of Jerusalem; ‘may they prosper who love you. Peace be within your walls.’”
We pray not only for the peace of Jerusalem, but also for peace and stability in our broken and divided world. As for ourselves, may God give us grace to be peacemakers and reconcilers in our daily living.
‘Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called children of God.’
May God bless you this Holy Week, that sharing with Christ in his suffering and in the suffering of his world, you may come to know the joy and power of his