“I’m full of joy, redeemed, set free” is the slogan being used by the Evangelical Church in the Rhineland for the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation in 2017. It is taken from the opening lines of a psalm-poem by the Rhineland cabaret artist and writer Hanns Dieter Hüsch (1925-2005).

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Call to prayer for Syria. Photo: VadimGuzhva - Fotolia.com Call to prayer for Syria. Photo: VadimGuzhva - Fotolia.com

Call to Prayer for Syria

“Hell on Earth…”

The situation in Syria is becoming ever more dramatic, especially in Eastern Ghouta, where people are starving and dying and medical care has collapsed.  The Rhineland Church declares its solidarity with the victims of the civil war and President Manfred Rekowski has issued a call to prayer for the people of Syria.

In the Syrian region of Eastern Ghouta the situation has been critical for months: people who are cut off from food supplies and deliveries of aid are starving and dying, and medical care for the injured and sick has broken down. Since the people in the region to the east of the capital Damascus are trapped there, they have no possibility of fleeing.

The President of the World Communion of Reformed Churches, Najla Kassab, who is also an ordained minister of the National Evangelical Synod of Syria and Lebanon has written to the Rhineland Church saying: “The situation in the Ghouta suburb of Damascus is described as “Hell on Earth”. The number of people killed in Ghouta is incredibly high. The innocent civilians are paying the price on both sides. We condemn killing on both sides and condemn all groups who are supporting both sides and are providing weapons to the area.”

The Rhineland Church declares its solidarity with the victims of the civil war and calls upon political leaders to use every opportunity to commit themselves to bringing an end to the violence and to take steps to find a political resolution of the conflict, especially with regard to achieving an immediate cease-fire, in order to enable the organising of aid transport for the care and relief of the sick and wounded and the general population. 

In view of this dramatic situation, President Manfred Rekowski has issued a call to all the local church congregations in the Rhineland Church, asking them to join in special prayers for the people of Syria.

Lord our God,

We bring before you our sense of powerlessness and our rage in the face of the violence and violation of human dignity in Syria. So many have become victims of the civil war. So much suffering, sowing new seeds of hatred and hindering the future.  So much injustice and mindless destruction.

You hear the cries of the wounded, those who mourn, and the refugees.  You know their need, their fears, their hopes for peace. Show them that you will not desert them.

We bring before you all those who have influence, that they may use their power to bring an end to the violence.    

We pray for those who are bringing these desperate needs into public awareness and who are risking their lives in order to offer relief. Keep them from resignation and strengthen them through your presence and through the solidarity of many other people.

Together with the churches in the Middle East we pray:

Bring peace at last in Syria and all over the world!

Amen

Church members in the Rhineland can also show their support and sympathy for the people in Syria through social media. Here is the link to the Facebook page of the National Evangelical Synod of Syria and Lebanon: https://www.facebook.com/SynodSL  (in English).

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ekir.de / 23.02.2018



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