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  • Writer's pictureDavid Carlson

434 A New Baby brings joy in Gaza

Day 434 Monday, May 24th, 2021

The birth of baby Mohammed in Gaza has brought much-needed joy to his family, which was displaced

by Israeli air raids.

(Hiyam al-Safadi holds up her new grandchild in an UNRWA-run school after her family was displaced from their homes in northern Gaza)

Mohammed al-Deif Adham al-Safadi was born just before dawn on Thursday in Gaza City, bringing much-needed joy to his family.

“I hope he will bless our lives with his presence. He has already filled us with so much happiness,” Hiyam al-Safadi, his 48-year-old grandmother, said.

Mohammed’s grandparents, parents, and his older brother were displaced from their home after Israel launched air raids on the besieged Gaza Strip on May 10 after Hamas, the Palestinian group which controls the territory, fired rockets into Israel.

At least 230 people have been killed in Gaza since Israel started its bombardment of the territory, including 65 children. Israel has reported 12 people, including two children, killed in rocket attacks carried out by armed groups in Gaza.

(Relatives and friends surround baby Mohammed in the Gaza al-Jadeeda school

in Gaza City)

According to the United Nations, more than 72,000 people have been displaced in Gaza since the violence escalated.

(More than 72,000 people have been displaced due to the Israeli bombardment)

The al-Safadi family home is located close to Israel’s fence in the northern Gaza Strip and they fled to the UNRWA-led Gaza al-Jadeeda school in Gaza City due to the intensity of the aerial bombardment.

“We haven’t been able to go back,” Adham al-Safadi, Mohammed’s father said. “It’s too dangerous and there are no safe places to go to.”

Ansam al-Safadi, Mohammed’s mother, said she never thought she would welcome her baby boy in a classroom inhabited by other families.

(Ansam holds her baby son as she sits on the floor of the classroom

she is currently living in. )

After giving birth at the al-Awda Hospital, Ansam was back at the school a few hours later.

“It’s a tough situation to be in,” she said. “The end of my pregnancy was marked with a state of fear and panic. Here, there is no privacy, and we don’t even have a crib for Mohammed.”

(Adham al-Safadi holds his son outside one of the classrooms)

Nevertheless, the baby has brought new hope for the family.

(Baby Mohammed's first bath)

“We were very upset when we left our homes, but today, we are happy because of this child which God has given to us under these difficult circumstances,” Hiyam said.


The Passing of Melva's Mom Jeanne Freeman Hobbs

On Monday May 10, 2021 Jeanne Freeman Hobbs, long time resident of Bishop, passed away at the age of 101. She was born on November 3, 1919 in Montana.

(At St. Timothy's Anglican Church, Bishop)

After earning her degree in Music she enlisted in the Marine Corp where she served as a Sargeant in World War II. After the War she married Stephen Kelly Freeman and raised two children Melva and Tom).

Jeanne retired as a music teacher for the LA School District in the 1970's and she and Kelly moved to Bishop where she became the Music Director for St. Timothy's Anglican Church. Jeanne was very active in the church, the Bridge Club, Bishop Elks, Bishop Golf Club, the Death Valley 49ers and several other local organizations.

After Kelly passed away she eventually married local resident William Hobbs and they had many happy years together. When Bill passed Jeanne continued to be very involved in all of her many activities. Jeanne lived a very full and happy life and will be missed by many.

Jeanne is survived by her daughter Melva Freeman, son Tom Freeman, two grandchildren (Stephen and Marie Coleman), 5 great-grandchildren and 3 stepchildren, (Dean and Paul Hobbs and Jeanette Drees).

Prayer for Palestine Israel:

A prayer for peace

By Rabbi Naomi Levy

God, Our hearts are breaking.

Our brothers and sisters in Israel and Palestine crouch in fear

as sirens pierce the air

and bombs from Israeli jets destroy lives and homes

and rockets from Gaza rain down from the sky.

We pray that all Israelis, Jews and Arabs,

will live in peace

We pray for the day the riots in the streets of Israel

will give way to sound of children playing.

When hate will be healed

and the sound of sirens will give way to songs of hope.

We are all God’s children

and in God’s light we are all One.

We pray there be no more violence or bloodshed within Israel Palestine

and we pray that Israelis and Palestinians will find a path to peace.

Hear our people’s prayers

and hear the prayers of innocent civilians in Gaza

who share our longings for an end to this conflict.

God Watch over Palestine Israel,

over all our brothers and sisters who live there.

Spread your shelter of peace over the holy land

and all its inhabitants.

Bring peace, God.

Let it rain down from the heavens like a mighty storm.

Let it wash away all hatred and bloodshed.

Peace, God. Please, God. Amen.

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