Ministry Matters

Discover Israel – VolunTour trips for groups

We can custom design a volunteer tour for your group in order to Discover Israel.

An average tour is 10-14 days (including 2 travel days) and would be divided into two parts: 4-6 days of touring with a local licensed Messianic Jewish tour guide (for example: Old City Jerusalem, Dead Sea, Masada, Qumran, The Galilee, Caesarea and local places around Jerusalem) and 4-6 days of ministry side by side with us in places such as Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Sderot and Netanya

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Passover Camp With 80 Children

The theme during the Passover camp was the “prodigal son”.  We also stressed verses that pertained to the fact that all have sinned, that there is no place where we can go where God is not present (whether we are trying to run from Him or whether we are seeking Him in times of trouble), and that God does not take pleasure in the death of the wicked but wants all of us to come to Him in repentance. 

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Bible Study and A Meal

During Passover, we hosted a Seder with people from two Bible studies. We usually get much smaller numbers during the regular weekly meetings, but here everybody brought their spouses and children.

Altogether we were 24 people.  It was a great time and many heard a clear Gospel message about what Yeshua did for each of us during that Passover week in Jerusalem.

 

Single Moms and Volunteer Groups

This past month has been both exciting and busy for us as many home repairs have been accomplished for quite a few single parent homes.  Thanks to volunteers from the States and Canada, we were able to accomplish a lot and make things flow smoothly. 

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Holocaust Survivor Sees the Light

A few days ago I visited H. who became a believer during our last evangelic trip to Poland with the Holocaust Survivors. He got baptized at the end of November and continues to grow with God. I was extremely happy that he has an open Bible at his house and he always reads it.

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Serving in the Netanya Distribution Center

In the front line work we do in the food distribution center in Netanya, many times we have the thought or feelings, “we are working so hard, is this all worth it?”  Then, just when we least expect it, the Lord will send us a comment by a 91 year old Russian Jewish woman,

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Practical Ways to Help Single Moms

Work with the single moms group has been going well as usual and they have been very grateful for the help with various home repair projects.  Recently, while helping a single mom from our congregation, we were able to include her son to help with some things. 

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Getting Ready For Camp

Throughout the year, we have meetings with the IsraCamp counsellors at our Jerusalem Messianic Center to continue to train and build them up in the Lord.  We have a team of 20 young people from different congregations.

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Our Work Among Holocaust Survivors

Our Heavenly Father is faithful to His promises and blesses our ministry. When I have an opportunity to share God's love to these precious people, I thank him. Our work has a time limit because I have seen six people from the group of Holocaust Survivors in Sderot die recently, to my profound regret.

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See Hearts Changed by Love

Shalom dear friends,
There was one new event where God allowed me to serve Him: believers from Denmark invited me to bring a group of Holocaust Survivors to have a kind of fellowship that would make a difference for people's life. The purpose was not only to rest in different surroundings but more importantly - to take time and think about God, why we need God and how to become closer to Him. Our Danish brothers and sisters wanted to contribute to their journey to learning that Jesus the Messiah is their Savior.
It was the first time that I took a group to this Northern country – Denmark, and I was not sure how everything would come out: I did not know the people that we were going to meet, the whole program and many other little details. There were 24 Holocaust and Ghetto Survivors from different cities in Israel. And as far as I am concerned, it made a valuable impact on the group.
I chose to speak about the uniqueness of the Bible because when a person really starts reading this book, God changes the heart. We learnt about biblical prophesies about Israel state and its fulfilment, because all of the group could witness it. Later we heard a lot about peoples love for Israel that stems from this Book of books. Moreover, we could experience this genuine love with which we were treated here. Thus, when people shared that they received this love from Bible and from the nation of Israel, many were impressed.
The majority of people were non-believers and they asked many questions concerning the authenticity and trustworthiness of the Bible, the personality of God. I saw their eagerness to discuss those important questions. Thus, it was a promising sign that people who did not need God in their life started to think about Him, respect Him and maybe even trust Him. I had many deep conversations and I hope that their curiosity will lead them to relationships with the Lord.
We could enjoy the beauty of the country; visited some museums and two congregations, listened to concerts of Jewish, Messianic and Christian music. People we met were the most wonderful part of the trip because it is them who make the difference.
Language was not a barrier to the love – people dealt perfectly with Danish, English, Hebrew, Russian and even Yiddish. It was very touching to see how everyone helped to understand each other and how a 90-year-old woman spoke Yiddish with another woman and got answers (even though they had no language in common).
People enjoyed their trip and gave warm reflection. They were so thankful even wrote thanksgiving poems and hoped that such trips were possible in future. I believe that this project has made a difference for their lives. I have known them in the past and I can see how many of them have changed. I pray for each of them, for becoming closer to God. We prayed a lot during this trip and my prayer is that they would see God working in their lives, loving them and waiting for them to come home.

Abundant blessings from Jerusalem,
Maxim Katz

Jerusalem Messianic Center Youth

Youth at the Jerusalem Messianic Center

Shalom dear friends,

Here in Israel we are in the midst of the Fall Feasts and it is a perfect time for organizing various projects because people have positive attitudes to towards renewed ‘spirituality’. However, this time it is different because of the recent war this past summer. Rosh Hashanah, the New Year, brings a hope for a peaceful year. Under such conditions, I had the blessing of having a 3-day meeting with the youth from Ashkelon, a city on the South of Israel.

Ministry Update 01This city received great deal of rockets during the summer’s war and life there was quite hard and stressful. Thus, as soon as God allowed me to do this, we invited some of the youth to come to Jerusalem for a few days. The idea was to give them both rest and spiritual encouragement. Previously, when we wanted to take people from stressful surroundings we found hotels but we understood that for a group of up to 20 young people it is more than suitable to stay at our Messianic Center in Jerusalem.

We managed to have a wonderful time of fellowship, we prayed together, discussed the present situation in the country and what we are able to do and how we can share the Word of God with others. Everything that is happening in our Land now has a spiritual foundation and it was good to talk with the young people about it.

Ministry Update 02We also encouraged them to define how they can show God’s mercy by standing up for what they believe in and what they know God wants them to do. Another subject we talked about was the meaning of the Jewish High Holidays and its importance in our lives. They were interested in learning about it. Many of the youth came to Israel with their parents who did not keep Jewish traditions, so this meeting was also a chance to get to know the roots of their faith.

We also went on a field trip to Masada, where we could get to know historical facts as well as think again about the importance of our decisions. I am glad that we could open the doors of our Center for the youth and we believe that the fellowship of believers can achieve many things, encouraging each other to reach out to other people. As for the non-believers, who also came, it was beneficial for them to have spent time with Christians for there is nothing else that speaks to people than the lives of others.


Abundant blessings from Jerusalem, Maxim Katz

A Fun day out amidst rocket fire.

As you know during the summer, the South of Israel has been under almost constant rocket attack and parents and children in these areas have spent their summer vacation unable to leave their homes and often hiding in protected rooms or bomb shelters all day and night. 

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Israel is at war - again. Summer 2014

SirensIsrael is at war! As always, it is the war we were forced to get into. Tens, if not already, hundreds of thousands of rockets and projectiles were sent into our skies from Gaza through the years. Millions of our citizens have been forced to run into protected rooms, The rockets were shot indiscriminately into heavily populated areas, hitting houses, schools, killing and wounding people, damaging property, leaving many with physical and psychological scars. There is a whole generation in many southern towns and villages that grew up knowing that they may suddenly hear a Red Alert sound that would mean that they have 15 seconds to run to a protected place.

Finally, the Israeli army went to deal with the cause of the unrest, Hamas. In addition to the regular army, almost 80,000 reservists were enlisted to protect our country, our people, our children. Despite the tidal wave of lies about Israel’s motivation, the attitude of our citizens, behavior of our soldiers in anti-Israeli media worldwide, there should be no mistake: we hate this war. We hate that our neighbors do not want to leave us to live in peace. We hate that the enemies hide behind their own civilians putting their lives in danger. We hate when we learn that their children are dying in the war we did not start. And of course we hate to learn that more and more of our soldiers die. In fact, we all cry together.

Because of this, every household in Israel tries to express love and appreciation to our soldiers. We, at Beit Sar Shalom were able to designate some amount of money in order to give something to IDF. I (Eugene) was given an assignment to figure out what would be the most needed items to be purchased and to find a best place where we could get more quality items (in order to bless more soldiers) for the same very limited amount of money we had. After two days of searches I stopped into a local shopping mall a few blocks away from where I live. While looking around (I hate shopping and therefore am not familiar with kinds of shops we have in that mall) I saw a store that specializes in socks and underwear. Those of you who ever been in the army know that even if you were not always given a luxury of having a shower twice a day (in our hot summers) so changing the socks and underwear may be crucial in protecting you from getting different skin problems.

I was glad to find out that this store was selling very good quality cotton t-shirts, underwear and socks that were permitted for the use in the army. The manager was very glad to hear about our desire to help our troops. Together we made a list that included two t-shirts, two pieces of underwear and four pairs of socks per package for one hundred soldiers. However, the price of this amount of items was twice as high then our budget allowed. The manager decided to double check if the source of the company can give us a discount. We were able to receive the items at 50% discount that matched exactly the amount we could spend.



After our van was filled with boxes Michael Zinn, Director of Beit Sar Shalom and I went to Beer Sheva to the major center where the donations for the soldiers were distributed. When we came there was a line of people arriving to give donations. It was very touching to see an elderly Russian Jewish woman, definitely a pensioner, bringing a shopping cart full of some goods, whatever she could find in her household, as well as in homes of several of her friends that could be of some use to our boys.

We mentioned that we had 200 hundred t-shirts, 200 pieces of underwear and 400 pairs of socks, the guy who was in charge for the distribution center almost jumped up to the celling. He said that these items were probably the most important ones in the current situation. When we were about to leave the room, a convoy of army tracks came to pick up the things to bring to the soldiers in Gaza. The commander of the convoy shouted from the entrance: “I need socks and underwear!” The manager looked at us and said: “Now you understand why I was so glad about your donation?!”

 It was such an honor for us in Beit Sar Shalom to be able to put our little droplet into a huge sea of support for the IDF. We did it with the Lords help, provision and blessing. We keep praying for the safety of our soldiers and that there will be one day when both Jews and Arabs will find a peace in the only Savior Yeshua haMashiah!

 

Our Children's Camp Ministry in Poland

Shalom dear friends,
 
I am so thankful for your prayers for Israel at such difficult times and for your support of our ministry.
 
I am writing this letter from Poland where we are holding a messianic camp for Israeli children. This camp was initially planned a year ago but it happened to take place at a difficult time for Israel. As I wrote previously, we are trying to help those people we minister to, especially elderly people. On Friday, I return to Israel but on the following Tuesday I am flying back to Poland with a group of Holocaust survivors from Israel. We are going for a week and a half to the south of Poland to give them opportunity to rest from the stress and the sirens, and to spend some time with believers. Right now there are about 25 people on the list. Some of them are quite old and it is hard for them to be on the move for a long time. Please pray for us as we travel there and back.
 
I want to thank all those who supported this project and gave us an opportunity to realize it.
 
Also, I received a letter today from our sister in Messiah from Ashkelon. She asks us to organize something for the children who are believers and who live there. She describes that the children have been living in fear for the last three weeks. They are on their summer vacation but they have not have any days off to relax. She sent me a picture of the kids sleeping in the stairwell because they do not have a bomb shelter in their building and they are afraid to stay in their apartment (attached).
 
Please continue to pray for our ministry, for these children, and for peace to come to Jerusalem and to the whole of Israel.
 
Blessings,

Maxim Katz

Sukkot Children's Camp - Ministry and Fun!

Shalom dear friends!

As usual, we started the new year with Sukkot, celebrating God’s presence and provision in our everyday lives.

We celebrated this holiday with children at a camp at the Jordan River. We had an opportunity to bring about 90 people together for this event and the children, from all over Israel, had the chance to learn about God’s good plan for their life.

This time, we focused on the Parable of the Talents in Matthew 25. Every day we encouraged the children to think about the talents and resources that God has given to each of them. Our days were filled with fun activities, Bible studies, and prayer time. Every night we had fellowship in small groups where the children could think about what they learned from the day, ask questions, and pray together.

The last night at the camp, we had a special evening program for the children. We illustrated what they had learned with a short play and encouraged them to appreciate the time that they have and to devote their talents to God. We asked the children to write the talents with which they would like to serve God. Almost all of them had impressively long lists.

Sukkot CampDuring this camp, we could clearly see God’s protection and His mercy as well as changes in the children’s lives. One example is a boy named Nathaniel, who wasn't willing to take part in any part of the program in previous camps and was always moody and alone. This year, he came to the camp and actively took part in all the events.  We saw that he was trying to be attentive even though it was not easy for him. During our quiet times for reading the Bible, he asked for a Bible and then talked to us about what he read.

I ask you to please pray for those children who made the decision to devote their talents and their lives to God.

We also have a large group of helpers - the youth who grew up in our camps. They have a big desire and potential to serve God and help with future projects. We are thinking of new ideas of how we could guide this new generation of followers of Yeshua to become stronger in their faith. We are considering having a separate camp for them or annual meetings and seminars where they can learn and be encouraged. Please pray for these young people as well.

Thank you again for you prayers and support!

Many blessings from Jerusalem,

Maxim Katz

Passover Camp - A time to learn and reflect

 

Dear friends,

This is the eighth year I have organized childrens' camps where children from Jerusalem and all over Israel (Tel Aviv, Haifa, Eilat, Ariel, Ashkelon, Ashdod) can come to spend five wonderful days together learning about God, worshiping Him, and having fun. There were more people than previous camps, around a hundred, including the staff and a group of children from Russia, who come every year for a ten-day trip to Israel.

 

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