Nuns choose to stay in Gaza with those who cannot flee

The Holy Family Church in Gaza is the only Catholic church in Gaza.

A group of nuns have chosen to remain in northern Gaza and continue helping vulnerable people in their community despite an evacuation order. 

The Sisters of the Rosary told Catholic charity Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) that there were elderly people and people with disabilities who could not leave. 

“Many hospitals” have been destroyed and they are in need of medicines, Sister Nabila shared.

“We will not go. People have nothing, not the basic things. Where should we go? To die on the street? We have old people, the Mother Teresa’s Sisters are also here, with people with multiple disabilities and elderly people,” she said. 

The sisters will remain in their convent, which lies within Gaza’s only Catholic parish, the Holy Family, which is sheltering around 150 Catholics and 350 Greek Orthodox Christians from nearby parishes.

Father Gabriel Romanelli, who is in Bethlehem, told ACN that hundreds of thousands of people have fled south, triggering a “disastrous” humanitarian crisis with widespread food and water shortages.

He said that while many parishioners have no choice but to stay, they are putting their trust in the Lord and believe that “they are safer with Jesus”.

He quoted Lamentations 3:26, which says that “it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord”. 

He continued, “And that’s why together they pray, they pray, and hope that the Lord will protect them and that the people who are working and praying for peace will change the decision to strike the church which has always been an oasis of peace.” 


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