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'We Believe in Jesus the Messiah': Christian Community in Israel Enduring Daily Hezbollah Rocket Fire

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JISH, Israel – Tensions are rising here in northern Israel after Hezbollah fired more than 50 rockets at the Galilee over the weekend. As the IDF prepares for a potential war with Hezbollah, the remaining residents in this area could soon be on the frontlines. 

CBN News visited this small Maronite Christian village in the hills of Israel near the Lebanese border. Daily life continues despite the ongoing threat of war as regular rocket attacks by Hezbollah keep the region in a state of heightened alert, with fear of an imminent escalation. 

In response, Israel is launching strikes deep into Lebanon, targeting firing positions, ammunition depots, and key terrorist operatives.

Maronite community leader Shadi Khaloul told us, "The Hezbollah today also have drones. They have precision-guided missiles. They have 80,000 fighters with elite units well-trained in Syria's civil war, ten years with Wagner force with Syria, with Iranian forces. So we know that they are very dangerous because they have a very radical Islamic Shia ideology."
Maronite Christians here have a long history of persevering through adversity. As they face the prospect of another war, they draw upon their rich heritage and the support of their tight-knit community.

"Well, we're still gathering in our church as usual, albeit with maybe a bit of a larger number," one priest explained. "We are peaceful people. We pray for peace. We want peace. We want the war to come to an end. And we pray for that purpose."

CBN News contributor Chuck Holton visited a small Maronite Christian village in the hills of Israel near the Lebanese border. 

The Israeli Defense Forces have evacuated everybody who lives between this area and the Lebanese border. It's only about 4.6 kilometers from here. That means this Maronite Christian community in Jish is now on the frontline because the people who live here have not been evacuated by the government. If they want to leave, they can leave at their own expense. But the people who have decided to stay are trusting in the IDF and in God to keep them safe.

CBN News contributor Chuck Holton visited a small Maronite Christian village in the hills of Israel near the Lebanese border.

Khaloul said, "This is not an existential threat only for Israel – Hezbollah terrorists are an existential threat to the Maronites here in Israel and to any other population in Israel as Israelis, and to the Maronites in Lebanon too, because (Hezbollah) want to turn Lebanon into an Islamic State."

The IDF is preparing to protect people here if all-out conflict breaks out, with emergency shelters and essential supplies. Home Front Command is also working to ensure their safety with bomb shelters to provide refuge for those in need.

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Khaloul explained, "We faced so many persecution and oppression and genocide during centuries of history and existence in this land. And our faith is the only (thing) who kept us standing in this land, in our forefathers' land, not giving up for any other foreign forces who are trying to submit us under Islamic rules. And that's because we believe in Jesus the Messiah, our savior that told us, 'Never fear because I am with you.'"

As rockets continue to fall and counterattacks persist, people here remain caught in the middle. For the evacuated, returning home is a dream that won't be realized until a lasting resolution can be found. Despite those challenges, the resilience and faith of these communities remain unshakable.

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