In Jewish thought, every human life saved is like saving an entire universe. Berthe, a Holocaust survivor, stood in front of our group and told her story. A Christian widow and her two children took her in during the Holocaust, the darkest time in Jewish history, saving her from almost certain death at the hands of the Nazis. As she told her story, she told of her children, her grandchildren and now even great-grandchildren. I counted 17 in all. Suddenly I realized that the Christian widow who saved Berthe didn’t just save one little girl; she has saved 17 so far.
In the last two months of the crisis in Ukraine, we have helped save nearly 5,000 Jewish people who are now safe in Israel. And the work continues. Ukrainian refugees continue to come to Poland, Romania and Moldova, seeking safety from Putin’s bombs, bullets and tanks. They are cold, hungry and traumatized. They are old people, women and children. They have seen horrors like bodies lying unburied in the streets, while others are buried in rubble, never to be seen again. Mass graves again mar the earth, so reminiscent of the Holocaust. Europe has not seen so many desperate refugees since World War II.
Our Project Rescue team has continued to work, even while exhausted, to rescue as many as they can before it is too late. Igor and Alla in Moldova helped save 93 people in 2021, and so far in 2022, they have helped save 2,117. They are so weary, but they won’t stop. They feel the hand of God giving them strength to continue helping one desperate person after another.
When these refugees arrive in Israel, our work continues. They need everything. As our Christian partners around the world give generously, we are able to provide some of their basic needs, such as kitchen supplies, towels, blankets, backpacks for the children and of course food.
The prophets said that God was going to bring the Jewish people home. In the book of Ezekiel, we read, “‘Then they shall know that I am the Lord their God, who sent them into captivity among the nations, but also brought them back to their land, and left none of them captive any longer. And I will not hide My face from them anymore; for I shall have poured out My Spirit on the house of Israel,’ says the Lord God” (39:28–29). As I watch the Ukrainian Jews step out of the planes onto the soil of Israel, I am reminded again that this is God’s heart for His people. What a blessing to be allowed to partner with Him.
Jesus (Yeshua) commended the widow who gave a small coin out of her poverty (Mark 12:41–44, Luke 21:1–4). You may think that your gift is insignificant. That is not what Jesus would say! Your gift—no matter how small or great—will be used by God to fulfill His prophetic promises to Israel. Consider, “who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” (Esther 4:14). We will not rest until all are brought to safety.
Your gift to our New Immigrant Fund allows us to bring them to safety, provide for their needs and feed them after they arrive. Together, we are saving a universe.
With blessings from Israel,
Rebecca J. Brimmer
International President and CEO
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