This week, please join us in prayer for Dr. Yohanna Katanacho in Israel.
The Holy Land has long endured unrest, discord, and violence – even when Jesus walked the earth. After the horrors of WWII, the State of Israel was formed in 1948. Subsequent conflicts between Jews and Arabs have led to Israeli occupation of territories in the West Bank, Gaza Strip, and Golan Heights. Tensions remain high between the Jewish majority and Palestinian minority. In May, protests over the anticipated forced evictions of Palestinian families in East Jerusalem erupted into eleven days of violence, leaving 260 Palestinians and 13 Israelis dead. Among Israel’s 9.4 million people, 74% are Jewish, 18% Muslim, and 2% Christian. Israel’s Christian population consists mostly of Arab and Aramean Christians, with a smaller number of Messianic Jews.
Yohanna is Academic Dean and Professor of Biblical Studies at Nazareth Evangelical College, which trains Arabic-speaking Christians for ministry leadership in Israel-Palestine. A Palestinian Christian, Yohanna grew up in Jerusalem, and has ministered in Bethlehem and Nazareth for much of his life. As the 2019 ScholarLeader of the Year, Yohanna lectured at Ukrainian Evangelical Theological Seminary (a client school of the Vital SustainAbility Initiative) on Christianity, national identity, and the Gospel of John. Yohanna’s wife Dina serves as the Director of the Arab Israeli Bible Society. Yohanna and Dina have three sons: Immanuel, Jonathan, and Chris.
Yohanna shares the following message:
Dear Brothers and Sisters at ScholarLeaders:
Nazareth Evangelical College is located in Nazareth, Israel. The college is fully indigenous. It is an Arabic-speaking college that serves Palestinian citizens of Israel, as well as others who either speak Arabic or are interested in Israel-Palestine. The Palestinian Israeli community makes up more than 20% of Israel’s citizenry and is located mainly in the Galilee area. We have two main programs: a BA in Biblical Studies and an MA in Leadership and Christian Ministry.
1. Please pray for our MA students to serve as peacemakers in a context marked by political tensions, civil unrest, and wars.
2. Pray for new friends who can partner with us in spreading the Kingdom of God among both Arabs and Jews in Israel.
3. Pray for the increasing effectiveness of our publications in raising the awareness of our community and readers about missional justice, peacemaking, and the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
4. Pray for our diverse BA students who come from a Muslim background, as well as those who are Christian refugees, so that God would equip them to bless their own communities.
5. Pray for the leadership of the college, that they would stay close to Jesus and be always full of God’s Spirit.