Cardinal Pierbattista Pizzaballa, the Patriarch of Jerusalem, made his comment in response to a question during a video conference with journalists in Italy.
freedom, to bring the children home. No problem. There is total willingness on my part," the cardinal said.
"The first thing to do is to try to win the release of the hostages, otherwise there will be no way of stopping (an escalation). We are willing to help, even me personally," he added.
"You can't talk to Hamas. It is very difficult," he said.
About 200 people were taken hostage and about a dozen of
them are believed to be children.
Pizzaballa oversees Roman Catholic activities in Israel and the Palestinian territories as well as Jordan and Cyprus, a region which is home to an estimated 300,000 Roman Catholics.
Pizzaballa said about 1,000 Christians were sheltering in Church buildings in northern Gaza after their homes were
destroyed in Israeli strikes.
"They don't know where to go because moving is dangerous,"
Israel has urged exhausted Gazans to evacuate to the south,
which hundreds of thousands have already done in the enclave that is home to more than 2 million people.