Shalom in His grace. I am writing to you from Israel where I am visiting our dedicated staff who are serving the Lord in the Holy Land. We currently have 24 missionaries and administrators working in Israel-—most of whom are Israelis, and we are so thankful for the growth of our ministries in Israel!
As you may know, our Israeli staff host a number of children’s camps each year. Just a few weeks ago, I was told of a tremendous opportunity we have to reach Jewish children in the Holy Land.
Our Camp Director, Maxim Katz, and our Israel Director, Michael Zinn, asked me to provide sponsorships for the growing number of children who want to attend our Messianic camps but cannot afford the costs since they come from poor immigrant families. Many of these kids are from unbelieving homes. Even so, their parents have given us written permission to teach them about Jesus through our camping programs. This just amazes me!
I asked Maxim to tell me in his own words what his team of youth workers has planned:
Our children’s ministry is growing. Each year we have children’s camps; two of them take place in Israel on Passover and the other on the Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot) in the fall. In each camp we have around 130 people including the leadership team and children from different congregations throughout Israel.
All our camps are in Hebrew with translation into Russian for those who need it. The camps also give an opportunity to continue to work with the youth who are going to join the army, who are currently serving or have just finished their service. They help to prepare the program. We meet during the year to pray, have fellowship, and create the program together. We cooperate with nine congregations in Israel who bring their children and leaders to the camp.
During the summer time we take 40-50 Israeli children to Poland where Polish Christians are eager to help us by providing the location and the staff for the camp, which incredibly reduces our costs! This brings together children from Russian Jewish families from Israel, and children from Germany and the former Soviet Union. The program is a joint Chosen People Ministries venture and volunteers come to help us from all around the world.
We are happy to say that recently 30% of the children come to us from non-believing homes.
The demand to attend the camps is great, and we are planning one additional camp in Israel this fall for 85 kids and 35 leaders.
What an amazing opportunity we have to bless these Israeli children! We hope and pray that their young hearts will be open to receiving the Gospel, if not now, then when they grow up. We are currently raising funds to provide these children with sponsorships to attend our Messianic camps. August is a difficult financial month for most ministries and local churches, but I believe God will supply all of our needs according to His riches in Messiah. (Philippians 4:19)
In the name of our Messiah,