Two paramedics, one Muslim and the other Jewish, as they pray together in front of their ambulance. A powerful message of peace and a symbol of hope which goes beyond cultural and religious differences.
During one of their rare work breaks, Avraham Mintz and Zoher Abu Jama pray together. Mintz was born in Beersheba in southern Israel, took his prayer robe and put it on his shoulders. Abu, from Rahat, also in southern Israel, instead positioned his carpet in the direction of Mecca, the sacred place for Muslims and knelt.
For 15 minutes, the two paramedics of the MDA emergency service (Magen Davi Adom) in the southern city of Be’er Sheva said their prayers and then returned to work.
As a colleague took this photo and posted it on social media, this powerful moment immediately became viral. It bears a profound message of respect for religious and cultural differences. For the two men, who regularly work together two or three times a week, their prayer break is nothing new. But for many others, this photo is a stimulating and inspiring image, most welcome among the incessant flow bad news generally divulged.
A beautiful shared moment that demonstrates how, at least in the face of serious health emergencies, differences can be put aside.
We have seen how the pandemic has resulted in a positive worldwide ceasefire, which various armed groups across the globe are gradually taking part in.
Last week, Palestinians and Israelis signed a “peace agreement” with a bilateral pact to fight the virus, and perhaps the photo of Mintz and Abu is the biggest symbol of this commitment. Unfortunately, however, it is also true that there have been bombings on Gaza by Israel.
“In terms of belief and personality we believe in the same things and we have something in common,” said Zoher Abu Jama “I believe he is a person that gives and takes the feeling of honor and that is important.”
Ours is still a long road to real peace, but the coronavirus seems to be helping people around the world reassess their priorities.