(photo credit: Courtesy)
One of North America’s largest African-American Christian groups and a hit gospel/R&B singer will visit Israel this month, on a trip sponsored by the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews.
Award-winning Gospel and R&B artist Bishop Rev. Marvin Sapp, of Ada, Michigan, will accompany 22 leaders of the Bahamas-based Global United Fellowship. Sapp, whose record-breaking albums include “I Win,” “Here I Am” and “Thirsty,” is also an active philanthropist who founded the Grand Rapids Ellington Academy of Arts and Technology, the first such charter school in West Michigan. The GUF is led by Presiding Prelate Bishop Neil C. Ellis of Nassau, the Bahamas.
In recent years, the IFCJ has been reaching out to African-American Christians, fostering new ties and building new bridges based on historic relationships forged in the Civil Rights era. The Fellowship and black church leaders have been working together to advocate for Israel against the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement, and jointly protested instances of anti-Israel and anti-Jewish activity. “We are grateful and blessed to be hosting this incredible group of African-American church leaders,” said Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein, the founder and president of the IFCJ. “Together we will see Israel up close, to be moved and inspired and to gain a new understanding of our shared histories.”
The delegation will be in Israel from September 19-26, and will tour Jewish and Christian holy sites. They will visit the Mount of Beatitudes and the Sea of Galilee, the Western Wall and the Old City of Jerusalem, and archeological sites such as Caesarea, Mount Tabor, and Megiddo. The church group will also visit Fellowship projects that support Ethiopian-Israeli immigrants and the elderly and visit Yad Vashem, Israel’s memorial to the victims of the Holocaust, and the Holocaust History Museum.
The 125,000-member GUF, with over 600 churches in the US and around the world, is the fourth major African-American church group to visit Israel over the past year with the Fellowship, which previously hosted the Church of God in Christ, the Progressive National Baptist Convention – the movement of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. – and the National Baptist Convention of America.To learn more about Jewish-Christian relations, check us out at @christian_jpost, on Facebook.com/jpostchristianworld/ and see the best of the Holy Land in The Jerusalem Post - Christian Edition monthly magazine.sign up to our newsletter