This morning during our staff prayer and planning meeting we received a call from Wolfson Hospital telling us that Wasim had died earlier in the morning. He was in the crucial period between his surgery a few days ago and a second surgery the doctors hoped to perform. As we immediately began to pray for Wasim's mother, I was thankful to remember the truth that God is near to the brokenhearted. I was certain that the other Palestinian mothers would be surrounding her and comforting her while the necessary arrangements were made. When we arrived a few hours later I did find Wasim's mom supported by the other mothers who are, for the most part, older than she is. Besides this, Um Wasim's great-uncle and aunt, who live nearby in Tel Aviv, had come to be with her to help her with whatever was needed. After the paperwork was done, Wasim's tiny body was carried to us in a small cardboard box so that we might drive to the Erez crossing to help them get to their home in southern Gaza. The relatives went along, which was a comfort to the mother, and a blessing to us. An ambulance was waiting for them inside the crossing area, so our goodbyes were said at the gate. Please keep Um Wasim and her husband, their 2 1/2 year old son, and the rest of the family in your prayers during this time of grief.
Tiny Wasim arrived by ambulance from Gaza to Wolfson Hospital late last night. He is almost three months old, and should have come to the hospital earlier, but we're thankful he is there now. His very young and frightened mother was weeping as she entered the ICU today along with the mother of Mohammad Hamdan. I was inside visiting Mohammad, and met her for the first time when she entered. We'd been told Wasim would have emergency surgery today, so I expected to find his mother waiting for her son to return from the OR when I arrived. Instead, I met her son first when I saw him in the bed beside Mohammad, and learned who he was from the nursing staff. I was able to stand with him and pray for a little while after speaking to the nurse assigned to him about his case. Wasim had a diaper on his head like a bonnet to help keep him warm. I noticed that when his mother came to sit by his bed, he opened his eyes as if he knew she were there even though she had not said a word before she sat down, although we'd been talking quietly nearby. Such is the bond of mother and child.
As I left, I spoke with one of the doctors on duty, and was told they might do surgery tomorrow, but that it was not definite, since they may do further assessments beforehand. The decisions depend on his condition foremost, but tenatively he will have surgery in the morning. I spoke with Wasim's mother to encourage her that the doctors and nurses caring for her son are all very very good. I shared with her that I would pray, and that I would tell my friends to pray also for her little boy. She seemed comforted by that, but was clearly very scared by the prospects of what might happen at any moment to her precious baby. Please pray for God's comfort for her during this intense time, and pray for Wasim to be healed by God's touch.