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A memorable date, never to be forgotten, on which 220 emigrants (olim) - amongst them many Jewish refugees from the east, who stayed in Odessa, Kiev, Dnepropetrovsk and Kharkov for quite a while - leave for Israel, permanently, from the airport in Kiev! Between Friday and Monday morning the entire ‘move’ will take place, when many of the emigrants will be transported to a location outside Kiev, where they will commemorate the wonder of Chanukah, celebrate Shabbat and have the opportunity to rest before leaving for the Promised Land.
Pim van der Hoff (Board Member of Christians for Israel International) will be in the Ukraine for a few days for this special occasion, and as we transport 2 Jewish families from Chernovtsy to Kiev in a round-trip of, approximately, 20 hours! Different Aliyah organizations work together in transporting the olim orderly and safely to the airport. On Thursday we brought a family with 3 very young children, in advance, from their shtetl home in Berschad, to spend the night in Vinnitsa. The parting was exceptionally difficult for great-grandmother Bronya, who had to say goodbye to her granddaughter and 3 young great-grandchildren.
|Picking up the family in Berschad|
|The great-grandmother reads Ezekiel 37:25-27 out loud to her 3 great-grandchildren|
The weather was awful, the fog impenetrable and long stretches of the road were virtually impassable. On Friday morning at 4:00, we brought another couple of young families with children from Nemierov, Picarivka, Vinnitsa, Zhitomir and Malin. And chauffeurs, from the provinces of Kiev, Lvov and Tjerkacci, transported more than 30 olim to their destinations on Friday afternoon. That same afternoon, a couple of large busses transported the refugees from Odessa and the East to Kiev. The past week, 5 Dutch volunteers assisted us in packing and distributing 1,600 food parcels, and in telling the Jews we met to ‘not wait for the hunters’, but prepare while they have the opportunity.
They listened attentively to the message, and many, indeed, wish to leave. 2015, therefore, promises to be another busy year! Many of the Jewish refugees, whom we sheltered in Kiev, recently left for Israel, but we continuously receive new requests from refugees who require shelter and assistance before making Aliyah to Israel! The last flight for the year will leave on December 30th, when more than 200 olim will depart!
Please pray for protection for the many trips, and that these emigrants will make a new start in His Country, with His Shalom! In Isaiah, chapter 62, the prophet refers to ‘the way being prepared for the return of His People’!