Cardinal Pizzaballa in Gaza: “Enough killing!”

Enough killing!

Cardinal Pierbattista Pizzaballa, the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, made a poignant visit to Gaza on May 16, where he urged an end to the violence with the strong declaration, “Enough killing!”

His visit aimed to deliver a message of hope and peace to the residents who have been enduring severe hardship.

The cardinal also showed solidarity with the Christian community amidst the ongoing conflict.

“I was comforted by meeting the community” said Pizzaballa.

“The situation is very complicated” he said, but “I found a well-organised, active community capable of living in this situation with the right attitude.

“I did not hear a word of anger. I heard words of pain, suffering and lament – but not of anger or resentment. Everyone desires for the war to end. They told me ‘We Christians don’t have violence in our blood. We can’t understand all of this’. It seemed truly significant to me.”

Cardinal Pizzaballa met with members of the displaced Christian community.

He also led prayers and celebrated Mass at the Church of the Holy Family.

The Cardinal also visited the St Porphyrius Greek Orthodox Church, which suffered damage during the conflict. This visit symbolised unity and the shared suffering among different Christian denominations in Gaza.

Need for humanitarian aid

During a press conference following his visit, Pizzaballa highlighted the dire conditions faced by Gaza’s residents, emphasising the lack of basic necessities and the urgent need for humanitarian aid.

The cardinal said that the destruction he witnessed was on an unbelievable scale and that the living conditions, with a lack of water, electricity and security were dire.

“At the end of my visit, I celebrated the Feast of Pentecost with the parish of Gaza and administered the sacrament of Confirmation to two parishioners” he said.

Pizzaballa emphasised two important things:

  • The necessity of maintaining unity among each other, which I saw and bear witness to.
  • And the crucial role played by the priests and sisters in the community in the past period.

“I also urged them, with the power of the Holy Spirit, to keep the flame of hope alive in their hearts and lives. I assured them that as a church, we will not abandon them and will be among the first to help rebuild Gaza and assist its people in achieving a dignified life” the cardinal said.

“What else can I say: I want to send a clear message to decision-makers. Enough killing!

“The war must end, and avenues for various aid must be opened to avoid an imminent humanitarian crisis. I hope this nightmare ends quickly” Pizzaballa said.


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