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Despite Gaza violence, Catholic relief agency works for peace
cna ^ | July 18, 2014 | Kevin J. Jones

Posted on 07/18/2014 2:09:11 PM PDT by NYer

Gaza City, Jul 18, 2014 / 11:32 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Though fighting has escalated between Israel and Palestinian militants based in the Gaza Strip, a Catholic Relief Services spokeswoman has stressed that the agency still aims to advance peace in the region.

“This conflict has dimmed the prospects for peace among Israelis and Palestinians, but as a Catholic organization, we are called to be peacemakers,” Liz O’Neill, Catholic Relief Services’ communications officer for the Middle East region, told CNA July 17.

“We continually advocate for our leaders in Washington to take concrete steps to promote a peaceful resolution to the conflict and reach out to Catholic communities in the United States so they can learn about the situation and pray for peace.”

O’Neill, speaking before the Israeli military started its Thursday night ground offensive, noted the conflict’s effects on both Israel and Palestine, saying violence is “inescapable” in Gaza.

“Drones constantly hover overhead, incoming airstrikes, mortars, tank shells, and naval bombardment are unrelenting, and there is nowhere to run. Entire families have been annihilated in an instant.”

In Israel, she said, “warning sirens disrupt daily life, and in the south, families must regularly take refuge in bomb shelters. Fear and uncertainty are a constant feature of daily life.”

Since July 7 Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip have fired more than 1,300 rockets on Israel, and the Israelis have responded with nearly 2,000 airstrikes. The recent escalation in violence between Israel and Hamas followed the June kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teens and the July 2 killing of a Palestinian teenager in Jerusalem.

Thousands of Israeli soldiers invaded the Gaza Strip July 17 in an effort to destroy Hamas’ weapons arsenals and their tunnels into Israel. Earlier that day, 13 Hamas militants attempted to enter Israel through one tunnel, only to be stopped by an Israeli military strike.

O’Neill lamented the violence.

“The current round of violence has once again definitively highlighted that the status quo is not sustainable, and that the only way out of this cycle of violence is a just, secure, lasting negotiated solution to the conflict,” she said.

“The full extent of the humanitarian crisis will depend on how long this goes on.”

Israeli attacks since July 8 have killed more than 270 Palestinians, at least 75 percent of whom were civilians and 20 percent of whom were children.

Another 1,400 Palestinian civilians have been injured, and some 40,000 have become displaced, according to the U.N.

Hamas' recent attacks have killed one Israeli civilian, and severely injured several.

Before the ground invasion, Catholic Relief Services had planned to distribute essential supplies to 500 families whose Gaza homes had been damaged or destroyed.

“We’re also planning to distribute vouchers to farmers who can no longer grow food because their land has been damaged by Israeli airstrikes,” O'Neill said.

The Catholic relief agency, which is the U.S. bishops' international relief and development agency, temporarily closed its Gaza office due to the violence.

The agency has been working in the Holy Land since 1961. Its initial focus on emergency response, food distribution and vaccination programs has now shifted to developing economic and social opportunities.

“Currently, we help plant the seeds for peace by working with grassroots organizations to enhance their ability to advocate for themselves, to hold government accountable and transparent and to give marginalized groups a voice,” O’Neill said.

“All of our work in the Holy Land is geared towards laying the foundation for a peaceful two-state solution and creating the conditions for a viable Palestinian state.”
 
O’Neill said the agency aims to carry out the U.S. bishops' “long-held position promoting a just, secure and stable two-state solution for both Israelis and Palestinians.”


TOPICS: Current Events; Ministry/Outreach; Moral Issues; Religion & Politics
KEYWORDS: gaza; israel

1 posted on 07/18/2014 2:09:11 PM PDT by NYer
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To: Tax-chick; GregB; Berlin_Freeper; SumProVita; narses; bboop; SevenofNine; Ronaldus Magnus; tiki; ...

Ping!


2 posted on 07/18/2014 2:09:34 PM PDT by NYer ("Before I formed you in the womb I knew you." --Jeremiah 1:5)
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Here’s a running account of news reports related to these recent events with Israel and Hamas. If you want to catch up on the news accounts ... they are here ...

http://www.freerepublic.com/tag/stisraelhamas/index

It’s listed from newest to oldest, so go to the bottom to start.


3 posted on 07/18/2014 2:31:23 PM PDT by Star Traveler (Remember to keep the Messiah of Israel in the One-World Government that we look forward to coming)
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To: NYer

No excuse for believers to be morally blind.


4 posted on 07/18/2014 2:37:48 PM PDT by gogeo (If you are Tea Party, the Republican Party does not want you.)
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To: NYer
“All of our work in the Holy Land is geared towards laying the foundation for a peaceful two-state solution and creating the conditions for a viable Palestinian state.”

How Carterian and Clintonian of them.

5 posted on 07/18/2014 3:10:25 PM PDT by xone
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To: NYer; familyop; Phinneous
“All of our work in the Holy Land is geared towards laying the foundation for a peaceful two-state solution and creating the conditions for a viable Palestinian state.”

Um-hmmm.

6 posted on 07/18/2014 3:40:32 PM PDT by Zionist Conspirator (Throne and Altar! [In Jerusalem!!!])
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To: NYer; Zionist Conspirator
"We continually advocate for our leaders in Washington to take concrete steps to promote a peaceful resolution to the conflict and reach out to Catholic communities in the United States so they can learn about the situation and pray for peace."

They only comprise about 25% of the U.S. population while being over-represented much in Congress. Ancient Rome excelled in one activity: propaganda. New Rome does the same. But in government, as before, not so much.

Congress more religiously diverse; Catholics still well represented [Most are C.I.N.O.'S]]
Catholic News Service/USCCB ^ | Jan-16-2007 | By Nancy Frazier O'Brien
"Catholics remain the largest denominational group in Congress, with 155 members -- 25 in the Senate and 130 in the House. But there are fewer Catholic Republicans in both houses since the 109th Congress and many more Catholic Democrats."

Catholicism Top Faith in U.S. Congress
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1763261/posts


7 posted on 07/18/2014 4:23:40 PM PDT by familyop (We Baby Boomers are croaking in an avalanche of corruption smelled around the planet.)
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To: NYer

The works of mercy are a good thing. And yet there are some days I think maybe it was a bad idea to demilitarize the military orders.


8 posted on 07/18/2014 4:46:34 PM PDT by RichInOC (No! BAD Rich! (What'd I say?))
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To: familyop
"Ancient Rome excelled in one activity: propaganda."

I would have said war, actually.

9 posted on 07/18/2014 5:18:37 PM PDT by Wyrd bi ful ard (Asperges me, Domine, hyssopo et mundabor, Lavabis me, et super nivem dealbabor.)
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To: familyop

“Ancient Rome excelled in one activity:”

Only one?

Law?
Latin?
Architecture?
Engineering?
Mosaics?
Military affairs?


10 posted on 07/18/2014 6:12:17 PM PDT by vladimir998
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To: vladimir998
“Ancient Rome excelled in one activity:”

"Only one?

Law?
Latin?
Architecture?
Engineering?
Mosaics?
Military affairs?
"

Okay. You got me there! I was wrong with the generalization.

But I would give ancient Rome a C (nearly average grade) on military affairs and an A (much above average) for diplomacy and convincing political speech. The Empire was defeated militarily quite a few times throughout its history, with the various invaders having no motivation to continue to occupy or govern (Huns being one of my favorites). That said, U.S. defense does borrow from some ancient Roman military experiences for teaching leadership skills (along with experiences from other armies of various nations in history).

In law, there was one shortcoming: lack of morality of the kind drawn from in early America and before in early Israel. Latin, on the other hand, provided a wealth of terms: an enormous number of word roots for our contemporary language. Our grammar and thought patterns for speech are more from early Germanic language (Norse, Gaelic, Old English beginning around the year 600). Architecture and engineering were developed from one empire to the next. Rome as an empire did its part in continuing and adding to cumulative architectural and engineering experience. Granted, though, some amazing early metals developments happened in Asia and northern Europe.


11 posted on 07/18/2014 6:54:11 PM PDT by familyop (We Baby Boomers are croaking in an avalanche of corruption smelled around the planet.)
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To: familyop

...Reg: All right, but apart from the sanitation, medicine, education, wine, public order, irrigation, roads, the fresh water system and public health, what have the Romans ever done for us?

Attendee: Brought peace?...


12 posted on 07/18/2014 6:58:59 PM PDT by jjotto ("Ya could look it up!")
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To: Wyrd bið ful aræd
"Sorry, I should have pinged you to comment #11." Thank you for the reply.


13 posted on 07/18/2014 7:00:36 PM PDT by familyop (We Baby Boomers are croaking in an avalanche of corruption smelled around the planet.)
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To: Wyrd bið ful aræd
Oops--my formatting error.

Sorry, I should have pinged you to comment #11. Thank you for the reply.


14 posted on 07/18/2014 7:02:36 PM PDT by familyop (We Baby Boomers are croaking in an avalanche of corruption smelled around the planet.)
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To: jjotto
"...Reg: All right, but apart from the sanitation, medicine, education, wine, public order, irrigation, roads, the fresh water system and public health, what have the Romans ever done for us?

Attendee: Brought peace?...
"

Moreh sets up the volley ball, and...a short clip, apparently from the Monty Python folks:

Always Look on the Bright Side of Life - Monty Python's Life of Brian
(posted by Monty Python)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WlBiLNN1NhQ

Have a good weekend, all.


15 posted on 07/18/2014 7:17:56 PM PDT by familyop (We Baby Boomers are croaking in an avalanche of corruption smelled around the planet.)
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