It is with a heavy heart that I write to you today, as we witness the tragic reports and images following the murderous invasion by Hamas terrorists in Israel on the Jewish feast of Simchat Torah, and for us the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary.
During this challenging time, it is crucial that we express our sincere thoughts and prayers to all those Israelis and members of the Jewish diaspora who have been affected by recent events. It is with great sadness that we acknowledge the possibility of lives lost, the lasting trauma of unspeakable acts of violence, and the pain of families with missing or kidnapped loved ones. In the face of such adversity, it is our duty to extend our deepest sympathy and unwavering support to our Jewish neighbors. Let us stand united in compassion, offering solace and strength during their time of immense sorrow and turmoil.
As Christians, it is not only our duty but our calling to denounce and oppose all forms of terrorism and violence. However, in doing so, it is crucial that we also extend our sympathy and concern towards the innocent Palestinians who will inevitably suffer as a result of the Israeli military’s response to the heinous acts of terrorism committed by Hamas supposedly in their name. We should seek the intercession of Our Lady for them all, commending ourselves too to her intercession and mantle of protection in these turbulent times.
In today’s world, where social media and alternative news sources often blur the lines of truth and intentional propaganda prevails, it becomes all the more important for us to maintain clarity and discernment, charity and the commensurate virtue, humility. We must remember the distinction between the Hamas terrorists who exert control over Gaza and the oppressed Palestinian people who reside there. Among these individuals are Christians, and people of various faiths and ethnic backgrounds as well as Muslims.
It is only through empathy and understanding that we can truly grasp the complexity and depth of the situation. By recognizing the diversity within the Palestinian community, we acknowledge that they are not a monolithic group but a mosaic of different individuals with unique experiences and perspectives. Their suffering and pain should not be overshadowed by the actions of a few, but rather, our hearts should be moved by their plight and yearn for a just and peaceful resolution.
In our heartfelt expression of concern and compassion for both the Israelis who have been affected and the innocent Palestinians who will suffer, let us truly embody the teachings of Christ, who showed us the importance of loving our neighbours. Through this deep empathy, we have the power to build connections, encourage meaningful conversations, and strive for a world where peace and fairness reign. As we take a firm stance against terrorism and violence, let us always remember to recognize the inherent humanity and dignity of every individual trapped in the midst of conflict.
Let us fervently pray for peace and stability to be restored to the region, for an end to the violence and bloodshed that has plagued both Israelis and Palestinians alike. May God’s healing touch bring comfort and solace to those who mourn, and may His wisdom guide leaders towards a just and lasting resolution.
Let us remain steadfast in our faith, reaching out with love and understanding to all those affected by this conflict. May our collective prayers and gestures of support bring hope and enlightenment, playing a part in the healing and restoration of the Holy Land, where Our Incarnate Lord shared and demonstrated His message of God’s love to bring about the Redemption of humanity.
In Jesus, Mary & Joseph