The Friends of Israel in Action Nov/Dec 2022

FOI and the ZOA
Last spring, the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) telephoned Tim Munger, a Church Ministries representative with The Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry (FOI) in Michigan, and asked if he knew any Christians who would be interested in joining the Jewish organization’s one-of-a-kind Leadership Mission trip to Israel.

The Christian participants in the ZOA Leadership Mission, left to right: Front row—Pastor Alex Perednia, FOI Canadian Director Robert Gottselig, FOI Representative Tim Munger, Barbara Gottselig. Back row—Pastors Robert Snell, Aidan Wengel, and Stephen Luff; FOI Representative Tom Simcox.

Tim jumped at the opportunity to connect the two communities, and in a matter of weeks he arranged a delegation of four believers from FOI and four pastors from the United States and Canada to join the 35 people going with the ZOA.

They went to places most tours don’t go and met with Knesset members and dignitaries. They not only visited sites in and around Jerusalem, but they also went to Judea and Samaria (the West Bank), Hebron, and Gush Etzion.

They also spent time in Sderot along the Gaza border, where everyone saw firsthand the Israeli children suffering from PTSD after years of Hamas rockets battering their town. They interacted with the brave soldiers of the Israel Defense Forces and saw the military and security forces’ resolve and determination to keep Israel strong, safe, and free for everyone—Jew and Arab alike.

We’re extremely grateful that FOI was able to fully fund all expenses for the four pastors through our Ministry Launch fund. It’s our desire to disciple and train Christian leaders in what the Scriptures teach concerning the Jewish people, and there is no better way to do that than to take them to Israel.

On the Sabbath, Tim led his team of Christians to the Jerusalem Assembly where they joined Pastor Meno Kalisher (Zvi Kalisher’s son) for worship and fellowship. Afterward, they toured Jerusalem and took communion at the Garden Tomb.

The highlight for Tim was toward the end of the tour when the ZOA asked the Christian leaders to share their experiences in Israel with the entire group. All the believers had an opportunity to express their love for the Jewish people, why they believe Israel matters to God, and how they see God’s hand moving in Israel today. Many people came up to them afterward to chat and ask questions about their faith.

Their messages compelled one of the Jewish participants to publicly express her personal faith in Jesus to all her ZOA friends. Praise the Lord!

The trip was unique in every way and reminded us yet again that “He who keeps Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep” (Ps. 121:4). Despite all of the threats facing Israel, God is her Defender and loves her.

You can help support our Ministry Launch initiative and programs like it in North American Outreaches with The Friends of Israel. Thank you for your prayers and financial support!

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In Canada, please give here.

Help for Ukraine
The humanitarian crisis in Ukraine has been unlike anything the world has seen for decades. Yet our Ukrainian and Polish teams have boldly responded to the call for help with little regard for their own safety. Just as God calls us to share the gospel, He also calls us to care for the broken and hurting with the love of Jesus. And that’s exactly what our workers have been doing consistently and selflessly since February.

Andrew with food shipment

The stories of refugees, Jewish and Gentile, who come through our European facilities or are touched by The Friends of Israel’s (FOI’s) relief efforts are countless. Hundreds of Ukrainians have stayed with us and received medical supplies, clothes, transportation, or simply had someone listen to their stories.

We’ve helped dozens of Jewish people make aliyah (immigrate) to Israel. One of our workers alone had more than 100 meetings to help people who want to go to Israel.

We’ve also taken food and medicine into some of the most devastated areas of the country, including the western city of Chernivtsi, which is inundated with displaced people who have doubled the city’s population.

Ukraine’s infrastructure and government services cannot keep up. FOI, along with churches in Poland, has been shipping pallets of food and supplies into the city to help in the crisis. We recently received a note from a rabbi in Chernivtsi who has been a friend of ours for years because of our ministry in his synagogue community.

“We are left without any help now,” he wrote. “And only you and The Friends of Israel have not left us, but faithfully continue to help our people. Thank you!”

We’ve ministered to people who saw rockets destroy their homes. We know people who walked for miles to the border under the cover of night. We’ve sat for days in vehicles with families who needed help and comfort. We wept and prayed with women who don’t know if they’ll ever see their husbands again. And we’ve been blessed to open the Bible with Jewish refugees who attended our children’s camps in Poland 30 years ago.

The Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry was established before World War II to share the gospel and help Jewish people escape the Nazis; and in 2022, God has taken us back to our roots. We are so grateful to all of you who are a vital part of this work and have joined us in loving God’s Chosen People.

As we continue to help Ukrainians pick up the pieces of their lives, we invite you to join our Eastern European teams and other FOI ministries around the world. Thank you for your prayers and financial support!

GIVE TODAY

In Canada, please give here.

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