Thursday, 8 January 2009

GAZA CRISIS January 09

As we watch and hear the news we agonise about what is happening in GAZA.  I have received many heart felt crys for help and include some below  

ben-thomas images 

The images are by a young photojournalist  Ben Thomas, a good friend of my son Jonny, who is currently staying in Ramallah.   He is due back in UK on 20th, after which  I am sure more  will appear on his BLOG and Photo Website. 

Al Ahli Arab Hospita
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The Al Ahli Arab (Anglican) Hospital has been in operation for over 100 years and has a very dedicated medical staff of doctors, nurses, technicians and general services personnel.

During the best of times they are stretched to their maximum meeting the medical needs of this populous community. Now, during the current military conflict with its heavy toll on human life and material, the hospital faces even greater responsibilities and challenges. The result is growing strain on the hospital’s resources. 

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Every day since the beginning of military operations, the hospital has received 20-40 injured or wounded patients. A large proportion of them require hospitalization and surgery. These patients are in addition to those with 
non-conflict-related illnesses. About one-fourth of the patients are children.......

In addition, the conflict has brought new type of medical and surgical conditions.
See full size imageMany medical items are needed, especially bandages and supplies for burns and trauma. The hospital’s windows have all been blown out or shattered from rocket and missile concussion and cold permeates the entire premises. Plastic sheeting to cover the windows could alleviate some of the cold but is unavailable now. Food supplies are scant throughout the Gaza strip and maintaining patients’ nutritional needs at the hospital has been difficult, especially for the most vulnerable. Some medicines and supplies for the hospital have been generously donated but it is impossible to delever these items....

Bishop Suheil S Dawani, Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem  - for more information look at the statement on the Diocese of Jerusalem website

A voice heard in Gaza 
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A voice was heard in Gaza. Wailing, weeping and great mourning. Nations weeping for Gaza’s children and would not be comforted because they are no more.

On December 23rd, 2008 on a Sydney Radio interview, I indicated that the forthcoming Christmas celebrations might not be joyous. "Why?" queried the interviewer. "Because" I replied "I feel that something is going to happen in Gaza". The interviewer's response was "you are prophesizing?" "No" I replied. "I have read the signs. The signs were clearly written on the wall." My feelings, my intuition have, tragically, proven to be right. I wish, I pray it was not so.

The besieged and beleaguered people of Gaza have been enduring the un-endurable for too long. Not just now, but for decades. Some Christian leaders remained silent. Some sadly equated the oppressed with the oppressor in their statements. None found their way to Gaza. May God have mercy.
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Bishop Riah the former Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem 

Other sources: 
There is more information available on the Faith2share website - see 
* Bibles not Bullets in Gaza
* Christian leaders call for intervention in Gaza
* Diocese in Jerusalem active in Gaza crisis

See also the CMS website for more stories and resources 
Gaza: Love and the Enemy
written by a collegue of mine, Tannas Al Qassis,  himself Palestinian 

more from the Diocese about the Al Ahli Arab hospital in Gaza 

a podcast about a reconciliation tour with Tanas and Jewish colleague  Joseph Steinberg 

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