Jesus (AS) and the Plight of Displaced Palestinians
She appealed, “I truly seek refuge in the Most Compassionate from you! ˹So leave me alone˺ if you are God-fearing.”
He responded, “I am only a messenger from your Lord, ˹sent˺ to bless you with a pure son.”
She wondered, “How can I have a son when no man has ever touched me, nor am I unchaste?”
He replied, “So will it be! Your Lord says, ‘It is easy for Me. And so will We make him a sign for humanity and a mercy from Us.’ It is a matter ˹already˺ decreed.”
This time of year, the Christian version of the birth of Jesus (AS), a story which is cherished by our Christian brothers and sisters around the world, often receives a great deal of attention. In this version of events, the pregnant Virgin Mary (RA), and her husband protector Joseph, seek refuge in a stable in Bethlehem (in modern day Palestine) as they are unable to find shelter anywhere else.
This account of events is of course different to the account revealed to our beloved Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ) as found in Surah 3 (Al Imran) and 19 (Maryam) of the blessed Qur’an.
Nevertheless, it is significant that every winter, over 2 billion Christians around the world find deep spiritual significance in the idea of a Palestinian family (living under occupation) who seek shelter from the cold winter, forced to give birth under distressing and unhygienic circumstances.
Because this winter, this story is extra significant.
Thousands of displaced Palestinians require humanitarian aid every winter. But this year, that number is in the millions. Over 1.9 million people in Gaza have lost their homes since October.
In the midst of the horrific humanitarian calamity, Gaza is grappling with unprecedented death and destruction. The heartbreaking events have left communities shattered, with thousands of lives lost and millions of homes reduced to rubble. The scale of devastation is profound, echoing far beyond the immediate conflict zones, inspiring humanitarian protests all across the globe.
This winter, we pray that this global outrage at the tragedy affecting millions will inspire swift action – from Muslims, from Christians, and from anyone horrified by the devastation playing out before our eyes.
In the face of such horror, we hope that the story of Mary and Joseph seeking refuge in a stable takes on a renewed resonance to those for who believe in it. We hope that it becomes a symbol not only of the hardships faced by individuals and families in ancient times but also an inspiration to aid those struggling in our world today. The parallels between the Biblical narrative and the current plight of displaced families in Palestine highlights the enduring nature of human suffering and the universal quest for warmth, safety, and hope.
As this story holds significance for billions during this season, may it inspire compassion and a collective effort to alleviate the suffering of those in need.
This winter, Penny Appeal are committed to bringing warmth and hope to displaced Palestinian families, just like we do every year. But this year, we need your help like never before.
Our donors’ dedication to providing assistance to Palestinian families is a testament to the enduring call for compassion and solidarity, echoing the timeless values shared across different faiths and cultures.
In our mission to provide vital support, we find inspiration in Prophet Īsā ibn Maryam (AS) and all the prophets from Palestine – known as the Land of the Prophets – who have been instrumental in bringing the message of Allah (SWT) to a mankind that desperately needs it.
Penny Appeal have been steadfast in our commitment to helping displaced Palestinian people for over a decade, and our efforts have now intensified. We understand the challenges faced by these families who are already dealing with the hardships of displacement, conflict, and economic instability.
We have been confirmed as one of only a few humanitarian organisations that have been granted approval to deliver aid via the Rafah Border Crossing directly in Gaza in association with the Egyptian Red Crescent. Our dedicated teams on the ground are working around the clock to distribute essential aid, including food provisions, clean drinking water, emergency shelter kits, medical assistance, and hygiene kits. The challenges are immense, but our commitment remains unwavering.
In this season of goodwill and compassion, Penny Appeal invites you to join us in our mission to support displaced Palestinian families facing the harsh realities of winter. As we reflect on the shared history and resilience of those who sought shelter from the cold, let us come together to make a difference and bring warmth and hope to those in need. Thank you for being a vital part of this mission, and may your compassion continue to illuminate the path towards a brighter and more hopeful future for the Palestinian people.
Click here to donate to Penny Appeal's Winter Emergency appeal in Palestine.
WEDNESDAY 20 DEC 2023