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We for Israel

Our position with Israel, God's covenant people

Can't we finally draw a line under our past?
No, because the subject of "Israel" is about the past, present and future. Even under the Nazi dictatorship, Mother Basilea dared to say before the Gestapo that Israel, God's covenant people, could expect a great future - as a clear consequence of the validity of the Holy Scriptures.

Deep shock over the guilt of our people against the Jews in the Holocaust brought our young sisterhood to repentance. Therefore, it is at the core of our vocation as a community to contribute to the reconciliation and restoration of our relationship with Israel.

Israel God's Covenant People

Atonement service in and to Israel

As early as the mid-1950s, a desire to do good for Israel, God's covenant people, to help heal wounds, flared up in Mother Basilea. Beginning in 1957, sisters ministered to Holocaust survivors in Israel, first in the north of the country, and later in Jerusalem. In 1958, Mother Basilea's book "Israel - My People" was published and became an eye-opener for many around the world to see the abyss of the past in the light of truth. During the Auschwitz trials in Frankfurt, it was our privilege to host survivors in order to assist them during such a difficult time.

Israel God's Covenant People

Every Friday evening we pray the Israel Prayer - a prayer of repentance and blessing - in our Motherhouse Chapel. A few years ago we placed a yellow star on the crucifix of a Jewish woman who died in a concentration camp. It is always a reminder to us that we cannot love Jesus the Jew and hate His people. When a well-known American Jew visited us shortly thereafter, he exclaimed, quite shocked, "If such a star had been placed on the crucifixes in all churches during the Nazi era, there would have been no Holocaust!"

Service also from the Mount of Olives

In 1962, more sisters were sent out, and for years they carried out a prayer ministry on the Mount of Olives - then East Jerusalem. Surrounded by Arab families, they had many opportunities to build cordial relationships. In their four decades of ministry there, they were able to lead countless groups of pilgrims to the Holy Places. Hundreds of thousands of the booklets "Holy Places Today" were, and still are, gladly taken in many languages to the sites of Jesus' life and suffering.

According to the Scriptures, from here shall be fulfilled what the church of Jesus prays from the beginning in the Lord's Prayer: "Thy kingdom come!" . The "Father's House" on the Mount of Olives was taken over by the Jerusalem congregation of Berlin, which founded a house of prayer on the mountain where Jesus will one day return (Zechariah 14:4).

Visitors from Israel

It is a great joy for us every time when Jewish visitors visit Kanaan - old or young, rabbis from Israel or a bus with residents of a Jewish retirement home from our country ... Their gratitude to have experienced something of love and comfort here is shameful.

Israel, God's Covenant People

A fatally flawed development

So that "His kingdom may come", it is part of our mission as Christians from the nations to clear away the stones from the people of Israel, God's covenant people, which have blocked their way to Jesus, their Messiah, for centuries (see "Clear away the stones"). Already in the early history of the Church, an ominous development was in the offing, which led to the first schism in the Church - the separation from our Jewish roots, which are quite clearly shown in the Holy Scriptures.

Israel's election is certain

The election of Israel, God's covenant people is valid - it was by no means replaced by the church, contrary to the very widespread "replacement theology". The biblical statement is clear: "Now if some of the branches have been broken off, but you, who are a wild olive branch, have been grafted into the olive tree and have been given a share in the root and the sap of the olive tree, do not boast to the branches.... You do not bear the root, but the root bears you" (from Romans 11:17,18).

And today?

We are grateful for all opportunities to do good to Holocaust survivors and to support them while they are still among us - whether in Israel, here in Germany or in countries of our branches. As Christians, we stand by the Jews as God's chosen covenant people, our "elder brother," and against any form of anti-Semitism. We likewise stand at the side of Israel, the land God promised them and to which He brought them back.

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Lord, bless Israel,
the people of Your love,
and let Your Father's eye
over the land of Your promise.

Lord, bless Israel,
the people of Your love,
that they may be made aware anew of their election
and live according to it.

Lord, bless Israel,
the people of Your love,
and give it empowered spiritual leaders.

Lord, bless Israel,
the people of Your love,
that they may seek their refuge and peace
in You alone.

Lord, bless Israel,
the people of Your love,
and let it be blessed in the mighty event of the founding of the state
and the return from many lands
see Your hand.

Lord, bless Israel,
the people of Your love,
and work through Your Spirit
that in their affliction.
do not rely on army or force,
but on You, who alone can strengthen,
comfort and refresh Israel.

Lord, bless Israel,
the people of Your love,
that they may not be oppressed
may not be weighed down,
but that Your Spirit may inspire them all the more
to prayer, supplication and repentance.
Let them be comforted and helped in all their fears.

Lord, bless Israel,
the people of Your love,
by soon leading the way of salvation history
with it to the glorious goal.

Lord, bless Israel,
the people of Your love,
be with it as its helper
as you lead them through the dark valley of suffering...
to the goal of its eternal election
to the goal of its eternal election.

Blessing Prayers over Israel from "Hope in a Hopeless World" - A Handbook for Prayers
by M. Basilea Schlink