The author of Ecclesiastes surmised that, “There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven” (Ecclesiastes 3:1). Over the past two years, we have come to realize that ministry in the Feinberg Messianic Center in Brooklyn has a certain ebb and flow to it. There is a time and season for each kind of outreach here!
One of those special times is during the summer months when we host both our internship program as well as our two-week mission trip, Shalom Brooklyn. With an injection of zeal, passion, and manpower, we are able to maximize the potential of these programs and make a concerted push to reach the Jewish community. The results of these summer efforts are often felt throughout our ministry during the rest of the year.
One example of this ongoing impact came out of our internship program. Since we host interns for up to two months, we like to assign them a special project to work on and launch during the summer. Last summer, after much prayer and planning, they were able to come up with a concert/coffeehouse ministry to reach Jewish young people.
These interns transformed the first floor of the Feinberg Center into a relaxed atmosphere, with live music by different local musicians, and an assortment of artisanal coffees and teas. The response was great and we have since taken this ministry and incorporated it into our long-term plans to reach Jewish college students with the Gospel.
Similarly, even though it only lasts for two weeks, Shalom Brooklyn produces results that are often felt throughout the year. With nearly 50 people volunteering each week, our teams are able to spread out across Brooklyn and Manhattan to meet and engage with Jewish people.
The Lord consistently makes connections, and our teams are able to start many conversations with Jewish people about Jesus. By the time Shalom Brooklyn ends, we often have nearly 100 new Jewish contacts for our staff to follow up with who are interested in continuing those conversations about Jesus.
I am reminded of a recent testimony from Shalom Brooklyn. A young Jewish man, seeking spiritual truth in Buddhism and eastern mysticism, met one of our volunteers who told him about the Jewish Messiah, Jesus. They had a great discussion on the street and he shared his phone number to continue the conversation.
One of our local Brooklyn staff called him up a week later. They connected, had coffee, discussed the Scripture, and he prayed to receive the Lord! This blossomed into a lasting discipleship relationship that continues to this day. One year later during the next Shalom Brooklyn, he was baptized in the ocean waters off of Coney Island, surrounded by our next team of volunteers!
If you have a heart for the Jewish people, we encourage you to come be a part of this exciting ministry event this summer!