In May, conflict erupted between Israel and Gaza, leaving behind a path of destruction and need. Tension in this region is not new. Long-standing feuds and sporadic bursts of fighting have occurred for decades, wedging a wall of hatred between these powers. During this most recent burst of fighting, the simmering tension erupted with rockets and airstrikes.
Eleven days of terror
For eleven days, this region experienced the most intense aerial exchange between Israel and Gaza since 2014.
The violence leaves thousands of innocent people in Gaza with sorrow, fear, and tremendous losses. Over 400 homes lie in ruins. More than sixty children were killed during the conflict. The damage to businesses and infrastructure further damaged Gaza’s frail economy.
“The children are traumatized, scared of everything, especially the slightest noise,” shared a family in Gaza. “When the mom . . . leaves for anything, the four-year-old daughter follows her. When the doorbell rings, she jumps in fear. The fear follows them into the night—she wakes up screaming from nightmares.”
Israeli communities near the Gazan border also experienced terror. CAM staff visited the home of a Christian in a coastal city. One day during the conflict he was working in his apartment. He had largely ignored the sirens and instructions to run to the bomb shelter because he wasn’t afraid. He left the room for a minute, and at that moment a rocket from Gaza struck the building. It killed a woman hiding in the closet of her bedroom two floors down from their apartment. The whole building shook from the impact, and five windows in their apartment blew out. Glass was everywhere.
“God saved our lives,” he testified. After this incident, he took refuge in a bomb shelter with his neighbors, although he still felt no fear. Many people asked him, “Why are you not afraid?” Part of his answer is written on a piece of paper on the door of his house: “He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.”
Over a week after the first rockets were fired, a ceasefire took effect between Israel and Gaza, officially ending this burst of violence. Active fighting has ceased, but sorrow and destruction remain in the aftermath. A CAM contact in Gaza reports a huge need for food among the displaced who are sheltering in hospitals, schools, and relatives’ homes. Thousands of Israeli civilians struggle to move forward after days of taking refuge in safe rooms and listening to rocket sirens.
CAM staff members in the Middle East are working with trusted contacts to provide food, medical supplies, water tanks, water filters, and other aid for Gazans and Israelis affected by the conflict. We see this as a tremendous opportunity to share God’s love in the face of destruction. Our projected goal for the project is $300,000. If you would like to help, your support will be a blessing.