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Saturday, October 22, 2016
London: three faiths unite in prayer vigil for Alan Johnston
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 An inter-faith prayer vigil for kidnapped journalist Alan Johnston took place yesterday afternoon at St Martin-in-the-Fields in Trafalgar Square. Muslim, Jewish and Christian clergy lead prayers for the release of the BBC correspondent who was abducted by an unknown group in Gaza six weeks ago. Imam Dr Abduljalil Sajid, who is chairman of the UK Muslim Council for Religious and Racial Harmony, said there have been many vigils taking place in mosques around the UK. He said: "We ask for God's sake, for Allah's sake, for humanity's sake please let Alan go free." Addressing the kidnappers he said: "It is not right to keep a person against his will and it is not right that you should damage the good cause of the Palestinians." Rabbi Mark Winer, Senior Rabbi at the West London synagogue, said it was very important that representatives of the three major faiths in the Middle East were praying together. He said: "Despite the different narratives and interpretations we may have for what is going on in our common Holy Land, we are united in our resolve that the kidnapping of a journalist, the kidnapping of Alan Johnston, is outside the bounds of acceptable behaviour regardless of the truth or justice of anyone's cause." Rev Nicholas Holtam, Vicar of St Martins, offered prayers for all in captivity "and in whose heart the lamp of hope burns low". At the end of the service each member of the congregation placed a candle in front of a picture of Alan Johnston. For more information on St Martin-in-the Fields see:
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