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Anglicans seek Holy Land peace

Anglican Communion Secretary General, Bishop Anthony Poggo has called on Anglicans around the world to join a global ecumenical day of prayer and fasting today – Tuesday 17 October – in response to the deadly attacks against civilians now underway in the Holy Land.

ACNS   |  17 Oct 2023  |

Bishop Anthony Poggo released his call to back the request for 17 October to be spent in prayer and fasting issued by the Patriarchs and Heads of Churches in Jerusalem – the leading ecumenical group representing senior Christian leaders in the region, including the Anglican Archbishop in Jerusalem, Archbishop Hosam Naoum.

In a statement, the Church leaders said: “our beloved Holy Land has changed dramatically over the past week. We are witnessing a new cycle of violence with an unjustifiable attack against all civilians. Tensions continue to rise and more innocent and vulnerable people are paying the ultimate price as the dramatic level of death and destruction in Gaza clearly show.”

They added: “in support of all those who have suffered in this war and of all the families reeling from the violence, we call upon the people of our congregations and all those of goodwill around the world to observe a Day of Prayer and Fasting on Tuesday, October 17th.”

In a follow-up statement, Archbishop Hosam Naoum said: “we pray without ceasing for justice, reconciliation, peace, and an end to hatred and war. We also pray for God to change the hearts of all leaders and decision-makers in our countries and around the world, For we are in dire need of hearts that love, show mercy, and are willing to live in unity with others – hearts that respect human dignity and choose life rather than death.

“We therefore call upon all our congregations, institutions, and parishioner families to join with our sister Churches in the Land of the Holy One In observing this coming Tuesday, October 17th as a day or Fasting and Prayer for peace, reconciliation, and an end to the war. We suggest organising prayer services and / or joining with other congregations in their services so that we can pray together with one heart and spirit.” 

On Monday GMT, the Secretary General of the Anglican Communion, Bishop Anthony Poggo, called on Anglicans around the world to accept the call to prayer and fasting today, saying: “Archbishop Hosam, and his ecumenical colleagues in the Patriarchs and Heads of Churches group, are in the front line of the Christian response to the ongoing catastrophe in Israel and the Gaza strip.

“I join them in calling on Christians around the world to join together in prayer and fasting on Tuesday 17 October, in the words of Archbishop Hosam, “for justice, reconciliation, peace, and an end to hatred and war.

“I also echo his call for political leaders in the region to pursue peaceful and diplomatic solutions towards achieving a just and lasting agreement for a two-state solution, and the realisation of the dream of both Israelis and Palestinians to enjoy living in freedom, justice, and peace.”