At Least 19 Christians Killed in Gaza Church Strike

October 21, 2023

The statement of the Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate on this tragedy can be found here.

For previous coverage of the persecution of Gaza Christians, see here.

“At Least 19 Christians Killed in Gaza Church Strike,” International Christian Concern, October 20, 2023:

10/20/2023 Gaza (International Christian Concern) –  An explosion Thursday night at St. Porphyrius Greek Orthodox Church in Gaza City destroyed the church’s assembly hall, injuring and killing dozens of people inside.  

At least 500 people, including many of Gaza’s small Christian minority, have been sheltering in the church since the war began. The explosion killed at least 40 people, including 19 Christians, according to preliminary reports. 

Neither side of the conflict has released a statement claiming responsibility for the attack. Gaza authorities state that it was an Israeli airstrike, while Israel has not yet made a statement at the time of reporting. International Christian Concern continues to monitor the situation as more information becomes known and verified. 

St. Porphyrius is an ancient church, with the church’s original site dating to the 5th century AD. It is the largest of the three churches still open in the Gaza Strip and one of the main locations where Gaza’s Christian community has been sheltering during the war, believing it to be one of the last safe places in Gaza.