With great horror, we received reports about the blast at Christian Ahli Arab Hospital in the heart of war-torn Gaza and the catastropic loss of life. The ownership for this act is being investigated. The horrific chaos of this war clouds our ability to gather information.
Though the intention or cause for the destruction certainly matters, our tears fall all the same. We weep for the hundreds of victims, for the loss of medical experts and humanitarians needed to respond to just such a crisis, but who themselves have fallen victims. We weep, praying that this profound violence upon the innocent civilians end immediately.
For those who need context, this is the very hospital run by the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem that Anglicans around the world have been sending funds to since the war broke out. As a Christian hospital, Ahli Arab treats all people seeing everyone as a child of God. Today, we are getting reports that seem to indicate the main structure of the hospital is still standing. However, an eye-witness doctor has told the world through CNN of the destruction within the walls. More passionately, he talked about the loss of life that surrounded him. May we pray for the dead and wounded and that the humanitarian health workers can be given the Grace of God to continue to do the work they tirelessly and mercifully do in a horrific war. And I ask our family in Christ to pray that the Episcopal Diocese of Jerusalem can restore the hospital to some level.
The faithful around the world are called to gather all into our prayers: the dead, the wounded, the frightened, and all who are suffering. Together, with those around the world, may our cries for peace be louder and more insistent than any justification for further violence.
We pray without ceasing.
Bishop Daniel S. Tuttle formally started the Episcopal Church in Utah with his arrival in Salt Lake City on July 2, 1867. The Church became known for its social justice ministry with the creation of Utah’s first school system for children of all religions. Bishop Tuttle also started St. Mark’s Hospital to serve the thousands of miners who had no other health care options. He tirelessly traveled by stage and horseback to establish churches from Montana to Arizona.