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Catholic Patriarch Pierbattista Pizzaballa of Jerusalem Vatican News / YouTube

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(LifeSiteNews) — The Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem has announced that the Israeli military shot and killed innocent Catholics in a parish in Gaza while also using a tank to destroy the Convent of the Sisters of Mother Theresa (Missionaries of Charity). 

In a statement posted on X (formerly Twitter) around 2 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on Saturday, December 16, the Patriarchate reported that a woman named Nahida and her daughter Samar were murdered by an Israeli Defense Force (IDF) sniper while inside the Holy Family Parish property, which is located in Gaza City.  

“One was killed as she tried to carry the other to safety,” the statement read. “Seven more people were shot and wounded as they tried to protect others inside the church compound. No warning was given, no notification was provided. They were shot in cold blood inside the premises of the Parish, where there are no belligerents.”  

The Patriarchate also explained that the IDF “destroyed” the Convent’s generator and fuel resources this morning. More than 50 in-need people reside at the home, which the Patriarchate says was designated as a place of worship at the start of the conflict.  

“The house was damaged by the resulting explosion and massive fire. Two more rockets, fired by an IDF tank, targeted the same Convent and rendered the home uninhabitable. The 54 disabled persons are currently displaced and without access to the respirators that some of them need to survive.” 

Three more people were injured Friday night inside the Church compound due to heavy bombing. Solar panels and water tanks were also destroyed, the statement said. 

The head of the Latin Patriarchate, Catholic Cardinal Pierbattista Pizzaballa, has repeatedly called for peace in the region, even offering himself in exchange for Israeli hostages to halt the conflict.  

He has previously said that “only by ending decades of [Israeli] occupation” will a “serious” peace process begin.

This story is developing… 

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