An Israeli soldier holds a flag next to the grave of a fallen soldier during a ceremony ahead of Memorial Day.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
When my wife and I arrived in Israel in 1990, we really had no idea about Israel or the Jewish people. We joined the staff of Christian Friends of Israel in Jerusalem. I managed the Distribution Center on Moria Street; this is where the incoming Jewish aliya came on arrival in Israel. We supplied them with clothing, financing, furniture and many other things to get them started on their new life. We also visited IDF bases and issued warm fleeces, TV’s and VHS recorders to the soldiers. The Holocaust survivors always got special attention, by providing whatever needs they required.
This experience and privilege of serving the Jewish people in such a way gave us a great insight to what the world is lacking in the knowledge of Israel. It is the most amazing country, and the Jewish people are by far the most innovating and tenacious people. I could not understand how the rest of the world could not see how important Israel is. The inventions and advances in the Medical profession, horticulture, science and many other outstanding achievements are amazing!
We learned so much from the people we met and the things we were involved with. In 1994, we returned to Canada and opened the Christian Friends of Israel office: CFI-Canada. From here we send out information about Israel, we ship out parcels of clothing to the Distribution Center in Jerusalem, and we help finance the many programs helping the Jewish people.
At one time I served in the Israeli Defence Force as a Sar-El volunteer, this is another experience that will stay with me forever. Our main goal now is to distribute news and information about Israel, and to encourage people to visit and support Israel. Our head office in Jerusalem organizes tours for visitors as well as a conference celebration on Shavuot.
We have now started a Shabbat Worship Assembly where we live and encourage those with a heart for Israel to worship on Saturdays; it has been going well for four years now. After the service, which include Hebrew songs etc., we show videos of Israel and teaching programs. The last one was by First Fruits of Zion, on the ‘roots’ of our faith. Everybody is amazed of the history and success of Israel. We visit Israel often, and learn much more each time on the fascinating place called the Holy Land. I could go on forever, but I think this gives an idea of how Israel has effected us, and in turn will effect many more to the understanding of how precious Israel is to the world. Written by J-Pilgrim contributors Paul & Margaret Collins
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