Sunday, October 11, 2009

VIGIL in Al- Aqsa Jerusalem & Archbishop Atallah Hana: "We are One People with One Cause"

Find Updated Report here and please add comments GO here and also find Updates with "Muslims See Victory at Al-Aqsa" here

"Clashes between Israeli security forces and protesting Palestinians have subsided as several hundred Muslims agreed to evacuate Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa Mosque following a deal brokered by the Jordanian embassy in Tel Aviv Saturday. 'This is the first time since Israel's 1967 occupation of East Jerusalem that Muslims have stayed in the Mosque for an entire week and prevented the Jewish extremists from entering. We are planning to organize groups around the clock in the future to prevent any further attempts at a takeover,' Jallad told IPS.

Christians gather in support of Muslims trapped in Al-Aqsa
Jerusalem – Ma’an – Christians of a variety of denominations gathered in Jerusalem Friday for a silent vigil in solidarity with besieged Islamic holy sites at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in the Old City.

“We are here to support Al-Aqsa and those who are confined inside it, we are here in support of Muslims whose dignity is humiliated and religious feelings are harmed by attacks on their holiest sites,” Archbishop Atallah Hana told those gathered.
This sit-in was a response to the call of Muslim scholars and clergymen to consider Friday a day of solidarity with Jerusalemites, and Muslim holy sites under attack by Israeli forces. By Friday night, Israeli troops in a standoff with more than 100 Palestinian worshippers who refused to leave the Al-Aqsa Mosque gradually left the area.

Palestinian Christians of every denomination were joined by pilgrims from around the world, sitting silently in the ancient building at the heart of the Old City. In his speech to the faithful, the Archbishop said, “being here in this holy site comes in solidarity with our brothers in humanity, in belonging to this holy land and because of our belonging to this blessed city.”

He said he considered “attacking Al-Aqsa an assault on our dignity and presence, identity, civilization and an assault the Christians as well as on the Muslims; we are one people with one cause.”

Glimpses of History

The beauty and tranquility of the Noble Sanctuary in Jerusalem attracts thousands of visitors of all faiths every year. Many believe it was the site of the Temple of Solomon, peace be upon him, destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar in 586 BC, or the site of the Second Temple, completely destroyed by the Romans in 70AD.

For Muslims the area has a special significance, as the site of the Prophet Muhammad's Night Journey, peace and blessings be upon him, and as the first qibla (direction of prayer) for Islam as well as the commandment to pray five times a day.

The Night Journey

Glory be to He
Who carried His servant by night,
from the Holy Mosque
to the Furthest Mosque,
the precincts of which
We have blessed.
so that We might show him
some of Our signs.
Surely He is the All-Hearing,
the All-Seeing.
-------Sura al-Isra'
-------Qur'an 17:1

Oh Lord, grant us Thy forgiveness; unto Thee we return." Qur'an II/285

Photos and reference text from several online sources.


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