10/17/2023 Gaza (International Christian Concern) – The past ten days have been filled with horror for southern Israel and for the Gaza Strip. October 7 saw the deadliest single terrorist attack in Israel’s 75-year history at the hands of Hamas.
The attack has been retaliated by Israel through non-stop Israeli bombardment and a complete blockade on the more than 2 million populated Gaza Strip. Thousands of civilians have been killed in the war, and international negotiations to allow critical humanitarian aid into the Gaza Strip through Egypt’s Rafah crossing have so far been unsuccessful.
Gaza’s small Christian community has been sheltering in two different churches in Gaza City during this week’s Israeli bombardment. Both churches lie within north Gaza, the area that the Israeli military has ordered civilians to leave in preparation for an expected ground invasion. The Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) have been made aware of the churches and Christians’ presence in the area, and reportedly, IDF leaders have told private sources that they will protect and ensure that the churches do not become targets in the war.
Gaza’s civilian population must be protected in this latest escalation of the Hamas-Israel war. Gaza’s churches must not become targets of war, and people taking refuge inside the churches must be protected. Political challenges and conflict in recent decades have threatened the continued survival of the Gazan church, and in this unprecedented time of crisis, global Christians must pray for Gaza’s Christians to be a light as they serve the suffering people around them.
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