“Comfort, comfort my people, says your God. Speak tenderly to Jerusalem” (Isaiah 40:1-2a)

In the aftermath of the tragedy at the Pittsburgh Synagogue, and the attempted anti-Semitic knife attacks in both Israel and Paris afterwards, there is much to be concerned about – and so much to pray for.

Organisations are making statements and protests are being made about such hatred and about political stances, but one message that has unified Christian organisations is that anti-Semitism is a huge concern across the nations and God’s command is to ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’

The Tree of Life congregation were hosting a Bris – a special time of celebration when a Jewish baby boy is circumcised on the 8th day, possibly watched by three or four generations of family as they welcome a new Jewish life.

Prayers are said – the shehecheyanu: “Blessed are You, Lord Our God, King of the Universe, who has granted life, sustained us and enabled us to reach this occasion”.

The scourge of Replacement Theology has raised its head again – it is fuel for anti-Semitism. The killer Robert Bowers quoted New Testament scriptures during the attack, which saw 11 members of the congregation murdered. The effects of it touch many aspects of society: churches, education systems, policing and government. For the Jewish communities around the world it seems it’s never far away and causes stress, trauma and fear in every age group. Jewish schools in the UK have policemen or security outside this week (in some cases permanently).

Our thoughts and prayers must be for the surviving victims, the grieving and for the respect of those who have been killed. We know God reaches down and heals and restores even in the most tragic of circumstances.

Well over a third of British Jews are considering leaving Britain due to concerns over anti-Semitism, its resurgence in many sections of society in the UK, and the failures to tackle anti-Semitic crime.

So please join us in praying for the following:

  • That the families of those killed will feel God’s comfort in tangible, supernatural ways.
  • God to heal the trauma and memories of those who were involved, including members of the emergency services and bystanders.
  • The community to pull together after this tragedy.
  • Local communities here in the UK to rally around the Jewish people here and in America, and for Christians to supernaturally realise the debt we owe to the Jewish people – for our Messiah and the word of God. For love to be in action and make a difference at this time for Jewish people who are in fear and a sense of isolation.
  • God-given opportunities to us as Christian Friends of Israel to bring healing and friendship in the wake of these terrible events.