Candles burn in front of a doll child lying down to sleep at the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem.


The heads of churches are holding the prayer in support of all those who have suffered in this war and of the families reeling from the violence,” they said in a statement on 13 October. 

Moreover, we call upon all parties to de-escalate this war in order to save innocent lives while still serving the cause of justice,” reads the statement, which also urges immediate actions to address the escalating humanitarian crisis in Gaza.

Our beloved Holy Land has changed dramatically over the past week,” their statement reads. We are witnessing a new cycle of violence with an unjustifiable attack against all civilians.”

As tensions continue to rise, more innocent and vulnerable people are paying the ultimate price, the Patriarchs and Heads of the Churches noted.

The order to evacuate the north of Gaza and to ask 1.1 million people—including all the members of our Christian communities there—to relocate to the south within 24 hours will only deepen an already disastrous humanitarian catastrophe,” the statement reads. Gaza's entire population is being deprived of electricity, water, fuel supplies, food, and medicine.”

The World Council of Churches is inviting all member churches, and people of goodwill to unite in prayers for peace, for aid to those suffering, and for those who have lost loved ones.

Jerusalem Heads of Churches urge addressing humanitarian crisis in Gaza (WCC news release 13 October 2023)

WCC calls for a new approach to conflict in Palestine and Israel (WCC news release 13 October 2023)

Church leaders in Holy Land call for de-escalation, respect for human rights (WCC news release 12 October 2023)

Service of Lament for Palestine and Israel: “we solidly believe in the sanctity of life” (WCC news release 12 October 2023)

WCC urgently appeals for immediate ceasefire in Israel and Palestine (WCC news release 7 October 2023)