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EXCITING NEW MINISTRIES IN LAND

Louise and Lawrence Hirsch have recently returned from Israel where they were involved with several ministry events: a retreat sponsored by Chosen People Ministries to mentor and encourage young Israeli believers, a conference called Jerusalem Encounter designed to engage the next generation of believers with mission and ministry in Israel, and a board meeting with our own partner ministry in Israel, Beit Sar Shalom. As well a new messianic outreach centre was opened in Ramat Gan, a popular suburb east of Tel Aviv with a high concentration of younger people. "I believe we are witnessing a growing move of God here in Israel as the new generation of believers are stepping forward to serve the Lord in the Land," Lawrence said. "It is exciting times and it is such a privilege to be a part of what God is doing in Israel."

 
HELP FOR NEW IMMIGRANTS

Israel has had a recent influx of refugees, including people from Eastern Ukraine. Imagine what it is like to be in a new country under duress. In addition to not knowing the language or culture, no friends, no relatives and only a few shekels in your pocket. Two elderly women met on the way to Israel, and on arrival rented a room together to save money. But on the day they were to move in, the former tenants hadn't removed their belongings or returned the keys. Our staff members Sergey and Rita helped resolve the situation, and bought the women a mattress since they didn't have enough money to buy one. It was a joy to see the look on their faces. Our ministry partners in Israel are thrilled to help Jewish immigrants settle into life in their new country and historic homeland.

 
PRIVILEGE TO SERVE NEWCOMERS

During the hectic season of Passover, our outreach worker Barry noticed more refugees in the churches. After speaking at a service, a young Iranian man aged around 25 came up to the book table. Barry greeted him with Shalom Aleichem (peace be upon you), and the young man said it was the first time he'd met a Jewish follower of Jesus. His journey to Australia had started in Iran and then he lived in refugee camps in Jordan, which was a very harrowing experience. Eventually he sought asylum in Australia. Barry considers it a great privilege to meet with these extraordinary, newly-arrived people here in Australia.

 
MESSIAH IS ULTIMATE DESTINATION

Robert drove from Canberra to Sydney with a Jewish friend to help pick up a car. On the road they were able to talk about why Jerusalem is the centre of world politics. This led to a discussion about the prophets such as Zechariah and Joel, and how world politics would continue to get worse and worse until the Messiah returns. "While this is only a seed to show that Adonai is God, we are praying that God's Spirit will soften the heart so that the seed will be on good soil," said Robert.

 
CHILDREN SPARK ETERNITY LINK

Jay took his 7-year-old daughter to a friend's birthday party and got chatting with a couple who'd also brought their daughter along. After a brief conversation they asked Jay what he did and he shared that he was part of the leadership of local Messianic Community. The wife of the couple told him about her friend at work who kept on sharing about Yeshua. He was an amazing man who shone with love and gave her lots of material about Yeshua. Then she made the most amazing statement: "I have started believing that Jesus is the Messiah". This was quickly followed by: "How can I learn more about Jesus?" After being so surprised by these statements, Jay shared with her about the Brit Hadashah, the New Testament. She was excited to learn more.

 
FAITH BLOOMS IN FLORAL TRIBUTE

Sydney Celebrate Messiah staff member Eve* specially ordered the favourite flowers for a Jewish friend Lena* in hospital. But on visiting she was told the friend was not allowed to have visitors or flowers in that particular ward. As Eve left the hospital feeling very disappointed and wondering what to do with the flowers, they were approached by a family asking directions and commenting on the beautiful flowers: it was their mother's favourite variety. Eve offered them the bunch of flowers to bring to their mother, and they gratefully accepted.

A few days later, Eve received a phone call from Lena. She shared how when she had been moved to a new room, a patient in the same room had her favourite flowers and offered to share them, and also shared how Yeshua had unexpectedly provided her family to bring to her favourite flowers. The two patients had several conversations about the Messiah before both they were discharged. Eve has continued to discuss Yeshua with Lena.

 
NEW CENTRE OPENS IN TEL AVIV

Very exciting things are happening in Tel Aviv. Staff member Jason reports, "During our renovation period, we had a lot of deliveries and technicians. They always asked about the purpose of the facility." One young man, David,* was very interested when Jason explained our team are Jewish people that believe that the Messiah has already come. David didn't want to take Isaiah 53 Explained, but he promised to read Isaiah 53 in the Bible. Around the same time, a delivery of new copies of Isaiah 53 Explained in Hebrew and Russian arrived. One of the delivery men, Moses,* wanted to know what the book was about, so Jason explained it to him and he asked for a copy. Most Israelis think that believing in Yeshua (Jesus) is a new fad. So Jason has been approaching conversations like these from a historical perspective and it has been very effective. Jason and the Tel Aviv staff look forward to the future ministry that this centre holds.

 
SEARCHING SCRIPTURE FOR MORAL COMPASS

Staff member Robin met Ran* backpacking in New Zealand. They talked for a long time about the difference between religion and knowing God personally and believing the Bible. Robin encouraged him to read the prophecies and to read the Gospels and see what Jesus said about Himself. The next day, Ran pulled Robin aside and said, "I want to talk to you." Ran shared that he was thinking about their previous conversation. In the army he sometimes read his Bible and found wisdom there, but saw it as moral fables. Robin talked about historic truth and God's faithfulness to Israel, and prophecies foretold then fulfilled. He decided it was time to read a Gospel to explore if there was more to the Hebrew Scriptures and this book (the New Testament) than moral lessons. Pray that Ran will open his heart to the Messiah.

 
ART FOR GOD’S SAKE

A young Jewish believer held his art exhibition in a Melbourne gallery. On the evening of the opening of the exhibition he spoke of what motivated and inspired his art. There were unsaved Jewish people in the crowd. In the middle of his speech, he spoke of his relationship and love for Yeshua his Messiah. Looking at the faces of people present, his mentor Baruch, could see they desired to know more. Throughout the evening, Baruch and his wife found themselves speaking to people, both Jews and non-Jews, about their faith in Yeshua. God's timing is always perfect at any place He chooses.

 
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