Download PDF: [Prayer for Berlin – October 2012]

Good News: Rent Limits

Rents for the 277,000 tenants of the municipal housing society will no longer be able to be increased as quickly as is currently possible. This is one of the results of talks that led to the “Alliance for Social Housing Policy and Affordable Rents”. The agreement was made between the Senator for City Development Michael Müller (SPD) and representatives of the six state-owned housing societies and is designed to help low-income households in particular. We see this as an answer to prayer, because we have been praying for solutions to the social tensions which have arisen through gentrification.

Good News: 100,000 Bibles for Berlin

The end of September, Christians passed out 100,000 Bibles in Berlin–in schools, universities, hotels, in hospitals and among their personnel, in nursing homes and doctor’s offices. We are thankful that God’s word was distributed among the people and pray that it will speak to those who read it and that many will come to faith.

Photo: Augsburger AllgemeineNew Senator of Commerce

Mid-September, Sybille von Obernitz, who had been in office only since December 1, 2011, resigned from her position because of an intense conflict with the director of the Berlin Exhibition Corporation and errors made when advertising for his replacement. The Senator (no party affiliation) had been criticized for quite some time, because she allegedly was unable to build good relationships with the business community.

It is hoped that this will change with the new Senator, Cornelia Yzer. The 51-year old manager and lawyer is said to be well connected to business and politicians. She worked for some years as a lobbyist for the Association of Research Pharmacists. Will the new Senator of Commerce continue the existing growth strategies which had been developed by Harald Wolf, a predecessor in the office? These strategies included a strengthening of the connection between research and business.

Prayer:

•             Pray for a good and quick adjustment for the new Senator and her staff

•             Pray for ideas and concepts about how to strengthen economic potential of the city

Berlin is catching up as a good Business Location

Last month Ex-Senator von Obernitz presented a “Business and Innovation Report” for Berlin. It clearly shows that Berlin is catching up in the nationwide competition among locations and is „on the way to becoming a metropolis of business innovations“.

The working population has continually grown since 2005, although the unemployment rate of 12.2% in August, 2012 is still the highest in the country. Companies often bring their skilled employees with them, because they cannot fill positions with people from Berlin. The number of positions in engineering and the electrical industry is growing.

Berlin was once the leading German industrial city, but today the percentage of industry in Berlin is still very low.

Prayer:

•             Thank God for all the positive business developments

•             Pray that ways can be found to further reduce unemployment

The Initiative CulturalWork in Berlin

The „Initiative KulturArbeit Berlin” (Initiative CulturalWork in Berlin) is a project which has been publically funded since 2008.

300 long-term unemployed people were given jobs in the cultural sector for three years. They have been employed in galleries, theatres, museums, event venues, and cultural associations. Thus, job seekers were given important opportunities to gain experience and qualifications and be integrated into employment and social life. This strengthens their self-worth and courage. At the same time, it also stabilizes artistic production and cultural education in Berlin.

The newest evaluations confirm the positive influence of the Initiative on both those providing the funding and the newly employed. Following the employment contract through the Initiative, some of employers were able to finance the job through other means. Some of the newly-employed were able to remain employed – in some cases with further help. Since January, 2012 another Initiative started with 100 jobs, which in turn will last three years.

Prayer:

•             Thank God for such initiatives which give people courage and value and at the same time provide substance for culture

•             Pray for successful communication and sensibility between cultural associations and those receiving jobs

•             Pray for successful concepts for crossing over into the regular workforce

Giving Thanks –Celebrating – Praying – 22 Years of German Unity on October 3

It has been 22 years since national reunification, and thus also the reunification of our city. This is reason to celebrate, because what happened then and how it happened it still a miracle of God. Once again this year, we want to thank God ecumenically and interculturally.

Christians from various denominations, nations, and generations are taking part and are welcome.

•             3pm – GIVING THANKS and praying, Himmelfahrtkirche am Humboldthain, Gustav-Meyer-Allee 2. 13355 Berlin-Wedding, U 8 Voltastraße: Devotional with a Serbian-Orthodox choir and others from the ecumenical movement, sermon by Pfarrerin Astrid Eichler.

•             4pm – PRAYING and remembering, walking and singing songs of thanks together from former West Berlin to East Berlin, going past the Berlin Wall Memorial Bernauer Straße 111, 13355 Berlin-Mitte, S Nordbahnhof, Tram M 10; Remembering the victims and the fall of the wall in the Versöhnungskapelle with the Revival Gospel Choir

•             5pm – CELEBRATING and fellowshipping Christus-Kirche, Anklamer Str. 31, 10345 Berlin-Mitte, U 8 Bernauer Straße: Interview with Eberhard Heiße, Deacon in former East Germany, who witnessed it happen, music by WakeUP, followed by fellowship with light refreshments.

Participation is possible only in one or two parts of the program. Sponsored by Gemeinsam für Berlin, the Catholic Diocese of Berlin, and the International Convent together with the Christus-Kirche Mitte.

Prayer:

•             Thank God for the miracle of the fall of the Wall and the reunification of Germany

•             Pray that gratitude will outshine complaining

•             Pray that the celebration will be a success

Keeping On: S-Bahn

In recent years, winter brought chaos to the S-Bahn. We pray that this winter things will go smoother, that there will be fewer canceled trains, and that the entire S-Bahn system will function better, thus being more dependable and causing less frustration.

Keeping On: Airport Construction

In the meantime, the new construction supervisor of the BER Airport has studied and sorted out the documents. Together with the Board of Directors, he has set the new opening date for October, 2013. A new financial director has been appointed in hopes that he will lessen the pressure on the present supervisor. None of the politicians on the Board of Directors has resigned. There are still things that need to be cleared up in the planning and implementation. The Tegel airport has reached its absolute capacity limit. But it appears as though the construction is now going better. Let us continue to pray for success!

Dates

Oct. 10, 6pm: Prayer in front of the City Hall (Rotes Rathaus)

Oct. 16-20: Operation Capital Europe – Prayer for the City and the Government: Prayer initiative for Christians from Berlin and other states together with brothers and sisters from Europe for our capital city, Germany, and Europe – in the government district, at historically relevant places, and in current problematic areas. – Preparation, introduction, praise, communal prayer and teaching every day at 7pm in the Jerusalemgemeinde, Spreeufer 5, 10178 Berlin. There are two ways of participating: either taking part in the entire program from Tuesday evening to Saturday afternoon or only during the evenings beginning at 7pm which are open to everyone. More can be found at: http://www.oceprayer.com

Beginning Oct 23, 7:30pm: Praystation at the Rund-um-die-Uhr-Gebetshaus (Around the Clock House of Prayer): For four weeks, get acquainted with and practice various forms of Christian prayer. Information / registration: http://tinyurl.com/c9pt8b7