Map Source: Bethany World Prayer Center
|People Name:||Arab, Palestinian|
|Primary Language:||Arabic, South Levantine Spoken|
|Christian Adherents:||5.00 %|
|Online Audio NT:||No|
|People Cluster:||Arab, Levant|
|Affinity Bloc:||Arab World|
It was the Balfour Declaration in 1917 by the British government that set the stage for thousands of Jews coming to live in Palestine. In the first Arab-Israeli War of 1947-1948, thousands of Palestinian Arabs fled their homes in the area now known are Israel. Atrocities were committed by both sides in the war. Since that time, Arabs who departed Israel have not been allowed to return to their homeland. During the 1967 Arab-Israeli War, thousands more left east Jerusalem, Gaza and the West Bank. Some of the Palestinians who departed Israel in 1948 and 1967 came to live in the United Kingdom. In the UK they advocate for a Palestinian homeland.
Some Palestinians in the UK someday hope to return to Palestine. Others have become British citizens and are content to live in the UK. The first language of the Palestinians is Levantine Arabic. Parents desire that their children learn to speak proper Arabic so that the next generation does not lose its ancient culture. Besides Arabic Palestinians of the UK also speak English. The Palestinians living in the UK are a mixed group. Some are highly educated and work in the professions. Other Palestinians take jobs that the many in the British population feel is beneath them such as dish washers, drivers, factory employees, and maintenance workers. In Islam a man can have up to four wives if he can support them. British law mandates only one wife. In the past, all marriages were arranged by the parents; however, it is becoming more acceptable for young people to choose their own mates, especially in Western nations like the UK. In Palestinian families the more children one has the better. Children, especially boys, are viewed as a blessing from Allah. As a result, Arab parents tend to have more children than other British families. Palestinian parents encourage their children to pursue university educations and gain high paying jobs.
Most Palestinians people living in the UK are Sunni, the largest branch of Islam. They try to obey the teachings of the Koran and the prophet Mohammed. Sunnis believe that by following the Five Pillars of Islam that they will attain heaven when they die. However, Allah, the supreme God of the universe, determines who enters paradise. Sunnis pray five times a day facing Mecca. They fast the month of Ramadan. They attend mosque services on Friday. If a Muslim has the means, he or she will make a pilgrimage to Mecca once in his or her lifetime. Muslims are also prohibited from drinking alcohol, eating pork, gambling, stealing, using deceit, slandering, and making idols.
The two main holidays for Sunni Muslims are Eid al Fitr, the breaking of the monthly fast and Eid al Adha, the celebration of Abraham's willingness to sacrifice his son to Allah. For many of the second and third generations of Palestinians living in the UK, Islam has become more a cultural traditional rather than a religious faith.
The Palestinians living in UK may not ever have heard a clear presentation of the gospel. Isa or Jesus is much more than the human prophet that He is deemed to be in Islam. The Palestinians working in lower-level jobs in the UK would benefit by learning job skills that would help them in gaining a better occupation.
Ask the Lord to raise up a Disciple Making Movement among the Palestinians in the UK in this decade. Pray the Holy Spirit produces a deep hunger for spiritual things among Palestinians.
Ask the Lord to use British disciples to share the gospel and show Christ's love to the Palestinians. Pray that Palestinians would tune into Christian TV and radio programs.
Pray that Palestinian parents in the UK would be able to provide adequately for their children.