Israeli tanks in Zeitoun neighborhood

Photo: Times of Israel

“The situation in the [Zeitoun] neighborhood [of Northern Gaza] is very difficult. I am not able to read or listen to your messages. [Israeli Defense Forces] have returned and invaded the whole neighborhood again.” (Anonymous source within St. Porphyrios)

According to our sources, the Zeitoun neighborhood of Gaza is currently surrounded by Israeli tanks and bulldozers. This neighborhood is home to St. Porphyrios Orthodox Church and Holy Family Catholic Church. As has been noted before, both churches are sheltering refugee from their neighborhood.

In January, Israel claimed to have dismantled Hamas in the Zeitoun area of Northern Gaza. Israel cited this as the reason for discontinuing the widespread bombardment of the area which began in October. In addition to confirmation from our sources in the neighboring churches, Israeli media confirms these new attacks.

Earlier today, Al Jazeera reported “fierce fighting” in the Zeitoun neighborhood of Gaza. Our contacts at Holy Family Catholic Church are reporting “lots of bombing nearby.”

Although communication with our contacts on the ground is spotty – as is typical during these bombardments – our team is actively pursuing more information. As of our last conversation, our contacts are “laying low,” limiting any movements outside the church compounds and trying to shelter as securely as possible. We are keeping them all in our prayers and will update again as more information becomes available.

The Holy Orthodox Order of Saint George the Great Martyr is the only authorized International Non-Governmental Organization blessed to raise funds for the Orthodox Christians of Gaza. This is per the direct and public blessing of Archbishop Alexios of Tiberias, the ruling Orthodox hierarch in Gaza.

Christ is Risen! Despite all the fear and devastation, Christ is Risen!

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