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25/04 • GAZA

  • April 25, 2024

Over 1.5 million civilians are sheltering in Rafah. A massive offensive is being planned against the city, with experts estimating that catastrophic civilian casualties will occur. There is simply nowhere else for these people to go. 

Intensified airstrikes are being carried out in preparation of a ground assault, with Israel's goal being the elimination of key Hamas commanders believed to be in Rafah. However, with the city essentially acting as a massive humanitarian shelter for displaced civilians, there are millions of innocent people trapped in the firing line.

While signals have been made to evacuate Rafah by the Israeli forces, the likelihood of effective evacuation is extremely low. On February 12th, the UN's Gaza relief director, Thomas White, stated that Israel's offensive in Rafah would force a million people to relocate to areas ill-equipped to handle such numbers. There is simply nowhere else for these people to go. Those who were displaced have had their houses bombed, there is no water or supply infrastructure and they cannot cross the border into Egypt. Rafah has been described as "... a pressure cooker of despair...".

However, hope is still alive, and the church continues to be the hands and feet of Jesus to those who need it the most. Displaced Al Ahli hospital staff have opened an extension clinic in Rafah, seeing a moral duty to serve the medical needs of the thousands of men, women, and children left with almost nothing but the clothes on their backs. The clinic offers general and specialised medical services, and also houses a pharmacy stocked from the World Health Organisation and numerous charities.

At the same time, Al Ahli Anglican Hospital in Northern Gaza still continues to operate, providing medical assistance and shelter to those affected by the conflict. We're proud to support the staff of Al Ahli and the vital ministry they are doing in the face of yet another humanitarian catastrophe. This week, we pray the news for Gaza.

We pray the news:
For the hearts and minds of those making key decisions regarding a ground invasion of Rafah. May they put compassion for the innocent before anything else. 
For innocent civilians who have been displaced into Rafah, looking only for some type of security amongst this conflict. We pray for peace to overcome the anxiety and fear of a potential attack.
For the brave staff of Al Ahli Anglican Hospital, who have taken a bold and brave risk in expanding the hospital's operations to Rafah. We pray for their protection as they act as the hands and feet of Jesus, bringing healing to those who need it at the cost of their own safety and security.
Pray for humanitarian organisations who are attempting  to bring assistance, that they would know God's protection and that they would have the resources and provision to meet immediate humanitarian needs including food, safe water and healthcare.

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