On Sunday, Israel reportedly conducted an air raid on a Catholic school in Gaza City, resulting in the deaths of four people. The branch of the Catholic Church in charge of the region denounced the attack “in the strongest possible terms” for its targeting of civilians as well as “any belligerent actions that fall short of ensuring that civilians remain outside the combat scene.”

Known as the Holy Family School, the educational center is officially part of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem under the Catholic Church. Two of its classrooms were targeted by the state of Israel, as Hamas militants were believed to be hiding among the Palestinian families sheltering in place there.

The Patriarchate also stated it prays and hopes “that the Parties will reach an agreement that would put an immediate end to the horrifying bloodbath and humanitarian catastrophe in the region.”

Among those who reportedly died from the strike was a senior administrator of Hamas, Ihab al-Ghusain, allegedly the deputy labor minister of the militant group. The army of Israel claims that the school was being used to house a “weapons manufacturing facility” and swears that they took precautions to ensure minimal civilian injury.

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This came hours after the Israeli military fired on a UN-operated school, resulting in the deaths of 16 people including two UNRWA workers. The UN was furious at the attack, but Israel maintains the site was being used to hide Hamas combatants.

Jason Jones, a filmmaker and author of the Great Campaign Against the Great Reset, made a video about the event from Madrid, Spain.

“I think it’s important to remember that Palestinian Christians are truly the descendants of the first century Christian community,” Jones claimed. “So it is this first century Christian community, the oldest Christian community in the world, that right now is under siege by our ally using weapons that as an American my taxpayer dollars in part went to fund. So please pray for a ceasefire, please pray for an end to the siege of Holy Family Catholic Church.”

He went on to ask Catholic journalists and bishops to speak out against the attacks, saying he found it “sorrowful” that the Church was silent about the “genocide in Iraq,” “the disappearing of Catholic bishops in China by the CCP,” and the “ethnic cleansing of the Christians from Artsakh by Azerbaijan.”

Jones’ charity, the Vulnerable People Project, has been facilitating aid truck deliveries into Gaza containing staple foods since late June. They are only permitted to bring 10 trucks into the war-torn territory per month, and each truck costs $33,000. An anonymous donor paid for the entirety of the first truck.

In December, an Israeli sniper killed a Catholic mother and daughter as they left the church attached to the Holy Family Catholic Parish in Gaza. “The situation already goes beyond tragedy,” said parish priest Fr. Gabriel Romanelli. “After the days of truce, the area of al Zeitoun started to be very active, with many bombings.” A tank operated by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) also fired on the Convent of the Missionaries of Charity, hitting the generator and igniting a fire that damaged the building.

Pope Francis at the time condemned the attack, saying there were no Hamas militants inside the parish but only “families, children, people who are sick and have disabilities, and nuns.”

“Some say, ‘This is terrorism. This is war.’ Yes, it is war. It is terrorism,” the Pope said. “That is why the Scripture affirms that ‘God stops wars… breaks the bow, splinters the spear’ (Psalm 46:10). Let us pray to the Lord for peace.”

In October, multiple churches condemned an Israeli airstrike on a building owned by the Greek Orthodox Church next to the Church of St. Porphyrios.

Israel continues to push deeper into Gaza City to rout out Hamas members that fled into its premises, causing thousands of civilians to flee from the area. Hamas leaders warned that this escalation could end any opportunity to reach a ceasefire agreement just after the two sides nearly came to a deal in the last week.

Shane Devine is a writer covering politics and business for VT and a regular guest on The Unusual Suspects. Follow Shane’s work here.

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