West Fargo residents in Bethlehem as Israel declares war against Hamas

Courtesy: Father Phil Ackerman
Courtesy: Father Phil Ackerman

(West Fargo, ND) -- WDAY Radio has received a message from Father Phil Ackerman in Bethlehem, as the group of 85 is 45 miles away of intense fighting in the Gaza Strip. 

"Our 2 groups met to discuss our options for the day. The checkpoints in Jerusalem are open. We can either remain at our hotels in Bethlehem, or go on tour in Jerusalem. Most have decided to go onto tour in Jerusalem, "said Father Phil Ackerman in a message to WDAY Radio. "There may be some delays at the checkpoint with traffic backed up. Many are thinking they would rather go on tour instead of sitting in the hotel room. In Bethlehem there are long lines to fill gas in their cars. They want to be prepared "


(West Fargo, ND) -- Several North Dakota churchgoers are currently safe in Bethlehem as several missile attacks from Gaza caused Israel to declare war.

Holy Cross Catholic Church pastor Father Phil Ackerman, several Holy Cross members, and priests from multiple other parishes are now in Bethlehem. The group of 85 includes people from Fargo, West Fargo, and Grand Forks. Father Ackerman says the group is currently safe, and have not heard any of the missile fire or gunfire, since they are approximately 45 miles away from the intense fighting occurring in the Gaza Strip.

The group was on a tour of the Holy Land with Father Phil Ackerman when the violence broke out. Two other parish leaders were in attendance; Father Gerard Braun of St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church in Fargo, and Father Augie Gotham of St. Andrew's Catholic Church in Hawley and St. Elizabeth's in Dilworth.

Courtesy: Father Phil Ackerman
(1 of 2) Courtesy: Father Phil Ackerman