Download PDF: [Prayer for Berlin – October 2014]
Good News: March for Life
5,000 protectors of life from many different churches walked through the city on Sept. 20 to say “yes to life and a Europe without abortion and euthanasia”. The rally in front of the Cabinet Offices, the long walk of silence along the white crosses for the babies that were not allowed to live, and the closing worship service in front of the cathedral emphasized in a positive way how precious God-created life is—from the beginning in the womb and also in old age.
This was the largest participation ever. It is evident that this topic is bringing an increasing number people from all over the country to the streets.
- Thank God for the opportunity to stand up for this topic in prominent places
- Thank God that the awareness of the need for protection of life at the beginning and at the end of life is growing
Good News: Berlin’s anti-fascist Left-wing has dissolved
For many years, Christians in Berlin have been praying that May 1 would stay peaceful. The group which had normally been responsible for the largest rampages during the “Revolutionary May 1 Demonstrations” is known as the Antifaschistische Linke Berlins (ALB) (Anti-fascist Left-wing Berlin).
In September, the group announced they were dissolving! The movement had been falling apart more and more. They admitted that their ideas, strategies, and goals had become too different. Thus, the group fell apart over the argument whether they should remain a more militant “black block” or join with other more moderate groups.
For some, the movement was no longer radical enough; others were searching for a way out of such radicalism. The ALB, which was founded in 2003, always organized the May 1 demonstrations in Kreuzberg and other demos which often led to violence.
- Thank God for a further answer to prayer concerning peace for the city
Opposition to Christian Viewpoints in Public
In addition to the thousands of demonstrators, the “March for Life” had several hundred counter-demonstrators who attempted to disrupt the silent walk by making noise with drums and whistles, throwing bags of paint, and shouting phrases repeatedly, some of which were very aggressive. Left-wing, alternative, and gay and lesbian activists imagined their right to sexual self-determination was threatened. Obviously they were concerned that the influence of Christians would be so large that the abortion laws would be intensified. Therefore, they attempted to stop the march several times through sit-in blockades, which, however, were all quickly cleared by the police.
In the night before the March for Life, there was an attack on the office of organizers in a church in Prenzlauer Berg—a room was trashed with paint and glass splinters. A camera team of the ZDF-today-show is reported to have cornered demonstrators and made serious demonstrators look ridiculous.
- Pray that the freedom to express and demonstrate for Christian opinions, which differ from the mainstream position, will be preserved
- Pray that Christians who are following Biblical ethics will learn to deal with opposition with gentleness and courage
- Pray for more public demonstrations for Christian viewpoints
The 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin wall will be celebrated on Nov. 9, 2014. City-wide events and exhibitions are planned. Topics emphasized will be the division of the city, the cold war, and the peaceful reunification. Events include a guided bicycle tour along the wall and visits to former watchtowers or the East Side Gallery.
The highlight of the anniversary celebrations is the weekend of November 9th. A large light-installation as a “symbol of the hope for a world without walls” will be staged along the former site of the wall. Thousands of illuminated balloons filled with helium will create a 12-kilometer-long “border of light” during the entire weekend through the centre of the city—from the former border crossing point Bornholmer Straße, past the Brandenburger Tor, over Checkpoint Charlie, to the Oberbaumbrücke. On the evening of Nov. 9, the balloons will be let go. In this way, spectacular pictures of the 25th anniversary will be shown around the world. Here is online information about events and dates surrounding the celebration of the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin wall (PDF). http://tinyurl.com/mrlzlve
- Thank God for the miracle of unity and freedom
- Thank God for the successful knitting-together of the two parts of Berlin
- Pray for the completion of unity in heads and hearts
Protection from Terrorism
Encouraged by the success of the murdering troops of the so-called “Islamic State” (IS), a group of Islamists from “Islamic State Berlin” has been promoting IS in Berlin. They had been spreading their incitement through Facebook until the BZ newspaper called for measures against their propaganda. De Maizière, Minister of the Interior then announced, “We must prevent radical Islamists from carrying their Jihad into our cities.” He forbid all activities of the terrorist group IS in Germany, including using social network sites. In Berlin there are several mosques where Salafists who are considered radical Islamists are meeting.
Salafists call for a “pure” Islam. It has been continually reported that young people quickly become radicals through these groups and then go to fight Jihad in Syria or Iraq. According to Homeland Security, there are 550 active Salafists in the capital city, 250 of which are rated “violence-oriented”. More than 50 Berliners have moved to Syria in the last two years. In particular, those who have moved into war zones are considered dangerous. Those calling for a terrorist response to countries participating militarily against IS are also a threat.
Thus, the risk of terrorist attacks in our city, especially against Jewish centres and in places where large groups of people gather, is growing.
- Pray for protection against terrorist attacks
- Pray that terrorist plans will be discovered before they can be carried out
- Pray that citizens, police, and homeland security will be alert
Currently members of the Berlin SPD are voting among three candidates for the office of Ruling Mayor. The candidates are State Party Chairman Jan Stöß, Party Chairman Raed Saleh and Building Senator Michael Müller. Candidate debates are being broadcast per livestream on the internet. Votes are to be counted by October 18. If there is no clear victor, there will be a run-off election. At the latest on Nov. 6, it will be clear who the Berlin SPD will nominate as Wowereit’s successor. The victor will be officially elected as the new Ruling Mayor on December 11 in Berlin’s Parliament, the day on which Wowereit will also step down.
- Pray that a man after God’s heart will be elected
New Life instead of “Corpses” under the TV Tower
Since the beginning of the year, we have been praying through this prayer mail and onsite that the Exhibition “Körperwelten” (preserved human bodies and body parts that are prepared using a technique called plastination) would not move into the empty rooms under the TV Tower on the Alexanderplatz. Following much protest, also on the part of Catholic and Protestant churches, the Berlin-Mitte district and Mayor Andreas Hanke have forbidden the exhibition. The controversial exhibition by the Plastinator Gunther von Hagen could now become a court case, because the organizers continue to hold onto the project.
An Initiative of Christians from several churches is looking into using part of the rooms for an interdenominational prayer centre with a view to having 24-hour daily prayer and praise. They imagine having Christian churches and ministries introduce themselves to the public there. According to their plans, the prayer centre „prayer tower Berlin“ would become a place of interaction between Christians and non-Christians, where people can learn about the Christian faith, be prayed for, and get to know God better. Interdenominational events would also be possible.
- Pray that the Exhibition of „Corpses“ on the Alex would not be possible, with or without a court case
- Pray for finances and support for the project “prayer tower” Berlin
- Pray that Berlin churches will increasingly have a vision for serving the city and for prayer
- 3, 3-8pm Thanking, Celebrating, and Praying 24 years of German unity – intercultural and ecumenical, begins with a worship service in the Kapelle der Versöhnung, Bernauer Straße
- 8, 6pm Prayer for City Politicians in front of the Rote Rathaus