Remembering Rita

Dear Friends,

We have very sad news to share with you.

Our dear friend and colleague for many years, Rita Ivenskis, went to be with the Lord early Sunday morning. On Saturday afternoon in front of 200 people at our Simcha conference, Rita was doing what she loved the most, talking about the love she had for her family, and giving her testimony of the Lord’s grace and power in her life.

As she was sharing, she said, “I just feel the Spirit of the Lord on me… Hallelujah… I want to fall down.” She then collapsed, and literally went to be with the Lord. Paramedics arrived quickly and tried to resuscitate her for almost an hour, and then rushed her to the Box Hill hospital 10 minutes away. Medical staff at the hospital did all they could to try to revive her. Doctors and paramedics said there was nothing any of us could have done, as her heart had just stopped.

Her husband Elia, son Reuven, and her sister Laura were at the hospital to comfort her and say goodbye. Louise and I were with her till the end, and prayed and worshipped by her bedside. Rita is now with the Lord she so loved, and it is as if the Lord came down and took her to himself in front of us all.

Please comfort one another with these words: “Yeshua said to her, “Your brother will rise again.” Martha said to Him, “I know, he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day.” Yeshua said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life! Whoever believes in Me, even if he dies, shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?” She says to Him, “Yes, Lord, I believe that you are the Messiah, Ben-Elohim who has come into the world.”” (John 11:23–27, TLV)

It’s difficult to process such a great loss to our community and such an incredible legacy; we all loved her so very much. Our precious Rita. We have never known a more selfless person who gave her life to serve others in His name. She will be honoured and remembered always.  She has given us a role model of a mighty prayer warrior, and we will continue her legacy of prayer.  May Yeshua be a comfort and strength to all our Beit HaMashiach and Dom Missi’ee families, to the broader ministry of Celebrate Messiah, and all those around the world, especially Far-East Russia where she served tirelessly and was so loved and respected.

Rita felt the Holy Spirit on her, and the same Holy Spirit she felt in her final moments is here to comfort us all. She recently said not to be sad whenever she died, but to rejoice, and to sing Hava Nagila. She has challenged many of us through the sacrificial life she has lived, to dig deeper into God every day and in every area of our lives.

In Yeshua,

Lawrence and Louise Hirsch

P.S If you would like to share your thoughts or memories of Rita, please feel free to reply to this email. These stories will be of great comfort to Rita’s family and friends.

Also, If you need to access counseling services please click this link.