Day 4 of Elijah Interfaith Summer School
Wednesday 5th August 2020 — Hosted in Jerusalem, participants zoomed-in from around the world
We started the day with a prayer led by one of our participants who is a Roman Catholic religious sister. That set the theme for the afternoon as we were looking at prayer as a connection to God.
Alon talked us through three Rabbinical takes on prayer asking us to identify the components of prayer. They seemed to be supplication, praise and requests.
I must admit I just pray and have never given thought to the formula. I struggle to understand the difference between supplication and petition. A quick check on Google provided the below on Jewish prayers.
Prayer and blessings in Judaism
Prayer builds the relationship between God and human beings. When people pray, they spend time with God. To pray is to…
A further Google search tells you there are 4 types of prayer, then 5, then 6.
We then looked at a Christian prayer and a Muslim prayer. In conversation with others, I realised that I see God through Jesus. Jesus is the human face of God and as I relate to God I do through my relationship with Jesus. I had never quite seen this before and I wonder did I only see it because I was discussing it within an interfaith context?
I also noted that the translation that we were using of Matthew chapter 6 which contains the Lord’s prayer read, “Do not pray like the Gentiles.” Again I noted that Jesus was speaking to Jewish disciples. Of course, I knew this intellectually but I hadn’t emotionally connected to it before. Was it because I was in an interfaith context that I had the emotional connection?
I also found that although I am not particularly into written prayers the line in the Lord’s prayer, ‘forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us’ is a daily reminder to forgive. It is a bit like the internal voice that reminds me ever so gently to brush my teeth. Each time I come to the line I have work to do, there are those I need to forgive and those who need to forgive me.
Elijah has produced a rich interfaith resource sprung out of COVID 19. We drew on two contributions one from a Patriarch of the Armenia Church and one from a Rabbi of a contemporary Jewish community, as below.
Rabbi Tamar Elad-Applebaum, Israel
Rabbi Tamar Elad-Applebaum is Rabbi of Kehilat Zion, Jerusalem and co-founder of the Beit Midrash (seminary) for…
We completed the day with Bibliodrama though as it was such a rich experience it will need a story all to itself and I am running out of time right now as we are due to start Day 5 in 14 minutes. I did find this demonstration of it on Youtube which may help.