Pray for Syria

Five-plus years of war have taken a heavy toll on our Syrian brothers and sisters. It is time for the violence and war to stop and to begin the hard work of moving forward, toward a future where all Syrians can live together in peace and security.
The Fellowship of Reconciliation, in coalition with many other groups, is marking this year’s International Day of Peace on Sept. 21 with a Global Day of Action and Prayer for Syria — and we’d like you to join us.
If you’re in the New York City area, please consider attending a special interfaith prayer service to mark the event:
National Interfaith Prayer Service for Syria
Wednesday, Sept. 21, 5:00 PM
Community Church of New York
40 East 35th Street, New York, NY
Wherever you are, we ask you to use the essays that follow as resources to promote discussion, prayer, and action for Syria.

Together, we must speak out and call for an immediate cessation of all bombing campaigns and military actions that perpetuate this terrible war.

As a global community, we must also respond with compassion and immediacy to the pressing needs of millions of refugees and internally displaced people. And we must stand in solidarity with those who suffer the double-jeopardy of displacement followed by the experience of racial or religious profiling and demonization. Sadly, given the latest failure to broker a cease-fire, all of these efforts are sorely needed.

U.S. faith communities including the Fellowship of Reconciliation have collectively endorsed A Call for an End to the War in Syria(PDF). We encourage you to share the statement in your community, and contact if your organization would like to be listed as an endorser.

Essays you can use to spread the word

Nonviolent Resistance in Syria (PDF), by me, Ethan Vesely-Flad, FOR Director of National Organizing:

“There continue to be extraordinary efforts by Syrian civilians to act nonviolently in the midst of war, and a lasting resolution of the civil war will depend on whether the international community will choose to support Syrian-led initiatives centered on restorative justice and transformative dialogue that includes all stakeholders in the conflict.”

Shifting to a Just Peace Approach (PDF), by Eli S. McCarthy PhD, Director of Justice and Peace for Conference of Major Superiors of Men:

“A just peace approach has many advantages compared to a just war approach. For instance, it has less risk of abuse as well as better helps us to imagine, develop, and commit to nonviolent practices, while cultivating just peace consistently throughout all stages of conflict.”

Unarmed Civilian Protection in Syria (PDF), also by Eli S. McCarthy:

“In Syria, Nonviolent Peaceforce and Cure Violence are in the midst of intensive training of 45 Syrian civil society leaders in violence interruption and unarmed civilian protection. These 45 will then lead trainings for up to 2,000 additional organizations or individuals in Syria. Ongoing support will be provided to local Syrian groups as they develop context-appropriate initiatives.”

Forthcoming essays will address themes of trauma healing and confronting Islamophobia.

Christian faith resources

For those in Christian communities, these worship resources may be helpful:

What is your own prayer for Syria? Share it with us via social media using the hashtags #Pray4Syria and #Peace4Syria.

We’re building a grassroots movement. Are you in?

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