The Olim Just Keep Coming
“I will bring them out from the nations and gather them from the countries, and I will bring them into their own land. I will pasture them on the mountains of Israel, in the ravines and in all the settlements in the land.” (Ezekiel 34:13)
Olim coming home to Israel by the thousands each month
Over 200 new immigrants to Israel, or Olim, arrived at Ben-Gurion Airport last Tuesday morning on an El-Al flight chartered by Nefesh B’Nefesh.
Family members, friends, and an IDF delegation welcomed the 218 new Israeli citizens as they entered the ceremonial “welcome home” hall, where the new immigrants were greeted with encouragement during the inspirational ceremony.
“We are celebrating today the Aliyah of hundreds of new Olim who will begin their lives in the Jewish State, many of whom are modern-day pioneers moving to Israel’s North and South.” “The thousands of Jews that will be returning to their homeland from the Diaspora over the course of this year are an inspiration to us all.”
Natan Sharansky, the chairman of the Jewish Agency, stated that the bulk of Aliyah occurs in the summer, he said, noting the Jewish Agency’s Paris office has more than 9,000 open files of prospective immigrants. In total, more than 8,000 French Jews immigrated to Israel last year, a record number that for the second year straight made France the largest provider of Jews to Israel in one year. Aliyah officials attributed the increase to a mix of factors including growing uncertainty over Islamist terrorist attacks, Zionistic sentiment by French Jews and France’s near-stagnant economy.
In 2015, some 7,500 Jewish people left Ukraine for Israel: up from 6,000 in 2014, and following many years when the flow from Kiev to Jerusalem was little more than a trickle. Most fled from the conflict-ridden east of the country: first westwards, and then across the Black Sea to Tel Aviv.
According to the Jewish Agency, there is a 230% rise of immigration from the 2013 figures. Altogether last year more than 31,000 people from across the globe moved to Israel, they say it is, a 12-year high.
Israel is a home to immigrants from all over the world that have made Aliyah throughout the years of its existence. Many of the immigrants escaped persecution for being Jewish, and coming to Israel gave them a sense of hope and security. Nonetheless, many of them lost their properties and belongings in the process, having to leave it all behind. They came to a new land with a different language, culture and customs, which makes the absorption process long and complicated.
Meanwhile; Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, passed the new holiday into law after 21 lawmakers outvoted five who were opposed. The holiday will begin in late October or early November each year, depending on how the Hebrew calendar falls.
“Israel’s prosperity was achieved, in part, thanks to those who left what they had behind and moved to the land of Israel,” the law states. “Moreover, the immigration to Israel is a symbol of Jewish history, during which the Jews lived in Israel, were expelled, but never abandoned it for a moment and returned to it—their historical home—as part of the Zionist national miracle.”
…and they keep coming to our FZS Distribution Center
As a result of high immigration, there is also a steady flow of Olim who visit our FZS distribution center in Jerusalem. They come to us from all over the world for help with the necessities of starting life over in Israel. It is our joy and privilege to have direct contact with these newly arriving Olim during our clothing and aid distribution days at our center. Here we are presented with many opportunities to share His love both through giving and our testimony as believers. Here are a few stories of some Olim who recently came to us for assistance…
Alex, Larisa and their daughter Olga arrived in Israel last November from Ukraine. Larissa has severe health problems and cannot work and things are very difficult financially. Alex who is unemployed is ready to take any job to support his family. Their daughter Olga is working and supporting the family. They are all very grateful to FZS for financial assistance.
Tzaganu is 17 years old and immigrated to Israel from Ethiopia as a child. He lives with his mother and 4 siblings, their father abandoned them and has returned to Africa. The family struggles to make ends meet and Tzaganu and his family are very thankful to receive assistance from us.
Vladimir and Anya are a religious family with 5 children. They live in a religious settlement called Elad. Vladimir has to ride his bike for 1½ hours to get to work in order to save money on gas for food. They both expressed great appreciation for the help they received at FZS.
Sergey immigrated from Ukraine and is studying to be a social worker with troubled teens. Sergey’s wife Paulina was also studying the same, however, after the birth of their twins, she had to delay her studies. The family struggles financially and they are so thankful to FZS for the assistance we provided them with, such as clothing and diapers for their children.
We also responded to a very special situation here at FZS.
Please meet Tatyana and her mother Katya.
Tatyana is married and has a 8 year old daughter. Tatyana has been suffering from cancer for 4 years, until all treatment had been exhausted and doctors in Ukraine gave her no hope.
She arrived in Israel this year on a tourist visa in desperation for medical treatment at Hadassah medical center. She shared with us that the cost of each of her chemo therapy treatment sessions costs $ 2,000 and every three sessions of chemotherapy, it is necessary to do a check PET SIII costing $ 2,300.
Her husband and father are working in Russia, to make this treatment for Tatyana possible. They had to sell their apartment and all the money they have has gone for her treatments in Israel. They came to us for assistance and wanted to attend our service and pray for healing in Yeshua’s name.
Tatyana and Katya will be living at our small volunteer apartment until she finishes up her last treatments, in order to save money… Please join us in prayer for a miracle of healing!!!
FZS Blessings Holocaust Survivors
We were blessed to host another group of Holocaust Survivors from Haifa at Haus Schönegg in Switzerland for one week this summer. We had a wonderful time living together and the fellowship was both touching and inspiring. The Survivors were willing to share their testimonies at any opportunity and on one such occasion at a church gathering, the press showed up and they were featured in the local newspaper (in German)…
Please pray for our next group of Survivors which we are organizing to join us in November this fall…
FZS supporting the Tambulig medical outreach in the Philippines
Arianne writes; Thankfully, we can say that there are two doctors, Dr. Apita and Dr. Lagria, who are willing to volunteer in our team. We also get help from a Christian pharmacist, Sir Lito, in Tacloban. We have done two medical missions with Dr. Apita and her team of nurses and midwives. There is an outbreak of diarrhea and the purpose of these missions was to assess the scope of this outbreak. We invited all these patients with diarrhea to our clinic and also informed them about diarrhea/cholera.
In this village, we gave vaccinations to newborns. There is a baby boom in the town of Borongan; so there were lots of babies! They are vaccinated here quite often, simply because there are many diseases that are virtually non-existent in the West.
For more pictures of our mission, please visit our Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/Tambulig-ha-mga-Waray-Medical-Mission-INC-159773687734479/?fref=ts
Special prayer needed: Manila prisons on brink of anarchy
Overcrowded jails in Manila
Mario Dimaculangan shares a toilet with 130 other inmates in one of the Philippines’ most overcrowded jails, and conditions are getting worse as police wage an unprecedented war on crime. Security forces have killed hundreds of people and detained thousands more in just one month as they have followed the orders of President Rodrigo Duterte, who has said the top priority at the start of his six-year term is to eliminate drugs in society.
“Many inmates go crazy. They cannot think straight. It’s so crowded. Just the slightest of movements and you bump into something or someone,” Dimaculangan said in one of the jail’s packed hallways that reeked of sweat.
There are 3,800 inmates at the jail, which was built six decades ago to house 800, and they engage in a relentless contest for space. Men take turns to sleep on the cracked cement floor of an open-air basketball court, the steps of staircases, underneath beds and hammocks made out of old blankets. Even then, bodies are packed like sardines in a can, with inmates unable to fully stretch out.
When it rains, the conditions are even worse as inmates cannot sleep on the basketball court, which is surrounded by the cells in decaying concrete buildings up to four stories high.
Dimaculangan is the longest-serving inmate in Quezon City Jail, after being charged with killing a politician’s relative in 2001. He insists he has a “clear conscience” but cannot get a chance to prove his innocence in court, averaging just one trial hearing a year in a chaotic judicial system notorious for its lack of judges, publicly funded lawyers and court rooms.
Dimaculangan said his spirits used to rise when he was informed of a date for a court hearing, but he had been disappointed too many times with cancellations or postponements.
“Now when they say I have a hearing, I don’t care anymore,” he said.
With no hopes of freedom, Dimaculangan said he had turned to his faith in Christ.
“My purpose is to help my fellow detainees,” he said. “God did not send me here because I am a criminal but to help others. There are many criminals out there but how come they are not in jail?”
Please pray for those who are involved in prison ministry outreaches to these lost souls.
FZS Support for Myanmar
Recent flooding has ravaged the Northern Chin state once again. Unfortunately, the flooding in Louisiana has overshadowed the current catastrophe in Myanmar. At least eight people have died as widespread flooding forces almost half a million people to be moved from their homes.
Survivors try to carry the dead for burial
This report from Elisha Sanga in Myanmar
There are many people who are in trouble because of massive flooding in the Chin region. One desperate friend who contacted us, whose name is Luke, a missionary among a Buddhist village and community. He is a close friend of ours who always works hard for the Lord. Recently, at the time when he had his home church from one house to another, most of the village houses were submerged in the flood. It is about a 3 1/2 hour drive from us. By God’s grace, we are organizing relief teams now to go on outreaches.
Thank you for the financial support you send! I want you to know that the villagers are really in need of help.
Beslan, Russia Outreach Update:
Jason on his way to Beslan, Russia
By God’s grace, I received the visa! I am so very happy to be heading back to Beslan to see the many people I love there, and Lord willing I will be leaving within two weeks, and am hoping to be in Beslan for three months. Glory be to God, for His great kindness and power! The Lord is so kind.
FZS will be joining Jason in Beslan for an outreach from September 6-15 and will be making follow-up visits with some of the children survivors we met while we were there after the school bombing, 12 years ago.
August 1, 2004, more than 777 small children on their first day back to school, were held captive for 3 days by Islamic terrorist in this gymnasium ladened with explosives. On the 3rd day of the ordeal, the bombs were detonated and over 350 died and hundreds were wounded in the brutal massacre.
Below is the story of a girl who was in that Gymnasium and survived the Beslan terrorist attack. It is very heartbreaking and powerful.
I do not think that one can deceive oneself their whole lifetime. It will not work.
I watch the news, and thoughts carry me back to 2004. I’m taken back to that year – back to those days – to those days which completely changed my life.
The weather was good that morning, as far as I remember. There at the school, there was a very cheerful atmosphere – many smiles, a lot of love in the air, and joy in the hearts of the first-graders. I was quite small then. In fact, I was four; my sister was still just a baby, at two years of age. Our mom took us to the “Welcome to School” celebration with our older brother – he was beginning first grade that day. And who would have thought that the celebration would turn into the worst days of my life?
Even now, I remember things clearly. Suddenly, balloons began to burst; shots were heard – we thought it was people shooting into the air like they do here sometimes during celebrations, but how wrong we were. When those people (the terrorists) started to herd us into the school, there was a terrible panic… screams… tears. The gym for three days became “a place of hope and prayers to God.”
These days, I do not remember every single thing from that time – only bits and pieces. I remember how we – clinging to our mother’s skirt – sat in expectation of a miracle. We were scared to death. We were hungry. And we waited for help.
At some point I fell asleep (or fainted – I don’t know), and I woke up only when I saw that a burning piece of wood fell on me. I don’t remember exactly where it had fallen from, but it fell on my foot. It was terribly painful. Around us was chaos. It was the second or third day – I can’t say exactly. I started looking for my mother, my sister, and my brother. I found my mom and my little sister in just six steps – they were hiding behind a large door. My older brother was not there – I was told that he was able to run out of the gym, into the street.
On the third day, my mother fainted. I cannot remember her face at that moment. My little sister was crying. Then, I remember parts of the assault – how the rescuers carried us on stretchers. Before my eyes flash the terrible images: blood… burnt people… weeping relatives, trying to find their loved ones among the dead. It was terrible. It is beyond words. Those days have forever changed me.
When I was not even four years old, I was able to fully realize the tragedy… all the suffering… and the list of those who died, leaving behind their sons, daughters, grandchildren, nieces and nephews, brothers, sisters, mothers, and fathers. I would not wish that even on my worst enemy.
Now I am sixteen, my sister is fourteen, and my brother is eighteen. I can say that we are completely different from the children who did not have to go through this. I had no childhood – no childhood which I can one day tell my own children about with a smile on my face. I have not had a chance to explore the world, as did my peers. I had to help at home and look after my mother, who was left disabled after the attack. Her left side is completely paralyzed, so I had to give her a lot more time than I gave myself. We had to do housework. We had to become mature at just six years of age. I did not choose this path myself. I had no choice – we had no choice. None. With a smile, I remember the words, “He (God) loves us.” If He really loved us, would He have allowed such a terrible thing to happen to us? I don’t think so.
I am a different person now. I cannot have fun now to the fullest. I do not know what awaits me next, or if I can ever someday forget about what happened to me. I feel deprived of the world in which I have to live. And this is not my fault.
When I say this night changed my life – that is exactly what I mean. It changed my life: spiritually, and materially. All the money that was allocated to us went for our mom’s treatment, but none of the treatments produced any significant results. I stopped believing in anything better. It’s probably harder for my mom, I know, but I’m just a child. I do not deserve this. I cannot put up with it.
I had great plans for the future. I wanted to go to America – to study there as a journalist, to have a house on the outskirts of town… a family. But I understand that no matter how much I wish to do this, it will not happen, because there is no way it can. My dad stopped working after the attack, to look after us and our mom. We have no money for education. I will not be able to go abroad.
Yes, money is one thing, but additionally – inside – I will not have the joy that could have been mine. None of that will ever come to be. I will not be able to tell my children and husband of a happy life because I have not seen a happy life. I do not know what will happen in the future; I do not know where I’ll be. I do not know if I can accomplish my dreams; I do not know if I can cope with the mental pain.
And if you, the person reading my words, complain about an unsuccessful business, the setbacks in your personal life, the fact that people do not buy you a phone or some clothes, just know that in another corner of the earth, there is a 16-year-old girl crying. A girl crying, who survived three days of hell on earth, and more than a few years of struggle.
And know that she never wants you to face what she has. I wish you, the one reading these words, a happy and long life, that you may never know such grief.
Update from Sierra Leone, Africa
We have just fished our food distribution and medical outreach to the Ebola survivors in Port Loko. Our plan to establish an orphanage there continues to progress as we are still waiting on government approval and the necessary documents to be completed. The outreach was so blessed and we were able to help 30 families, 15 from Romeni and 15 from Rotengber including orphans and widows.
Thank you very much for your prayers and support! We are looking forward to your next visit with us to preach the Gospel!
AlphaJor and Miriam
Alphajor distributing food packets to Ebola survivors
Thank you for your faithful prayers and support to FZS as so many lives are being touched both in Israel and around the world through your giving!
Thank you for standing with us!