Gaza Ceasefire Pilgrimage is a network of autonomous Christian groups with shared convictions who are engaging in a prayerful show of solidarity in cities around the world, where people during Lent will walk the length of the Gaza Strip.
Pilgrimages are taking place throughout Lent. We are encouraging people to find a date within Lent that works for them to host a pilgrimage. For those on the Western calendar, this year starts Wednesday, February 14th and finishes the day before Easter Sunday, Holy Saturday, March 30th. Lent is the 40 days (Sundays not included) that Christians meditate on the final period of Messiah Jesus’ life and his death. As Christians enter into the season of Lent, before the celebration of Easter, we are inviting anyone who wants to be involved in this prayerful, nonviolent pilgrimage that will be the length of Gaza – 41km, or 25 miles.
Events Near You (North America)
- Chicago, IL, United States – 23 March
- Grand Rapids, MI, United States – 2 March through 30 March
- Kingston, Ontario, Canada – 9 March – fundraising page
- Los Angeles, CA, United States – 23 March
- Minneapolis/St Paul, MN, United States – 23 March
- Seattle, WA, United States – 9 March
- Spokane, WA, United States – 30 March – fundraising page
- Victoria, British Columbia, Canada – 16 March
- Washington, D.C., United States – 23 March
- Whitney/Maynooth, Ontario, Canada – 11 March and 25 March
- Wheaton, IL, United States – 24 February through 23 March
In the United States and Canada, funds raised will be distributed by Churches for Middle East Peace (CMEP) equally into the following three categories:
1. The first third of funding will go towards humanitarian relief efforts in the Gaza Strip, including food, water, medical supplies, and shelter. These funds will, in part, be distributed by CMEP’s board denominations working on the ground in Gaza to Catholic Relief Services (CRS), the Al-Ahli Arab Hospital, American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), and the American Friends of the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem (AFEDJ) which have long-standing presences there. Other funds will be allocated to trusted humanitarian organizations working in Gaza, as recommended by partners, colleagues, and board denominations.
2. The second third of funding will support efforts for Palestinian refugees seeking safety in the United States and Canada with little or no government support. These funds will be distributed with the help of our 30+ board denominations and organizations that are active across both countries.
3. Finally, the last third of the funds raised will support CMEP’s church-based educational programming and advocacy efforts in the U.S. and Canada. Some examples of these efforts include meetings with communities across the U.S. to discuss the war and its consequences; D.C.-based advocacy with congressional offices, State Department officials, and the White House; and the development of educational resources and briefings used by CMEP’s constituents around the world. CMEP’s mobilization efforts include gatherings like previous White House prayer vigils calling for a ceasefire and ending all violence. All of our work is done in close consultation with our partners on the ground in the Holy Land.
Our prayer is that this Lent as we meditate on the life and passion of Jesus, we might deepen our solidarity with what our Palestinian sisters and brothers are experiencing daily. We are committed to taking seriously the body of Christ in Palestine’s costly testimony to the truth of what is happening. Like Israeli human rights organisations and Jewish peace groups, we too want to accurately name what Palestinians are undergoing as fitting the legal definition of apartheid and military occupation. We heed the wisdom of experts who overwhelmingly identify genocidal intent in the ongoing war against Gaza and we are committed to its prevention. As Jesus teaches, we are seeking to “simply let our yes mean yes” and speak plainly the truth. We do so following the lead of so many Palestinians, including Palestinian Christians who have been on the forefront of the nonviolent movement, in calling for an enduring ceasefire and an end to occupation so a healing peace can finally begin.