Shevet Achim on Rahaf’s surgery day

Written by Grant Crooks

We know the beautiful verse that inspires the name of our community. Today we experienced Shevet Achim in action. At the most basic level – we sat. We sat together. We sat together for nearly eight hours. We spent a portion of that time sitting with Abu Rahaf – but he seemed exhausted and noticeably anxious and mostly paced and went for cigarette breaks. And we sat as a large community, expressing loving support for Rahaf and her sweet family. We can not think of a better expression of what Shevet Achim is all about.

The gathering of Shevites grew and grew & at one point we snapped this photo that represented supporters from 7 nations – Columbia, England, Kurdistan, Syria, Germany, America & Israel. How amazing.

After six hours we were informed that the surgery was complete and successful. Rahaf’s VSD, the hole in her heart, has been completely repaired and she received a conduit replacement for her ventricular stenosis. An initial problem with bleeding was brought under control.

By the time we left the hospital, after eight hours, Rahaf had been extubated and was waking up, showing signs of the feisty little girl in pink that we know and love.


Grant returned to the CICU room one more time to say goodbye and was privileged to be able to pray with Akram before departing.

We are constantly noticing the high esteem that Shevet Achim holds among the hospital staff. In the ICU room Grant & Margarit introduced ourselves to the doctor as volunteers with Shevet. She responded, ‘Oh, I know who you are because you are the ones always standing nearby with so much concern and love for these children. I know who you are and I think you are amazing!’

What an honor and blessing to be a part of this day that the Lord has made. Who other than our amazing loving Father could orchestrate an intersection of lives such as this. Thank you Father, and thank you Shevet Achim.