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Aliyah: From Tikva in Odessa to Jerusalem

Koen Carlier - 25 June 2020

Last Thursday (June 18, 2020) we got the news about the Aliyah of thirty-two Jewish men, women and children from Ukraine to Israel. On Monday June 22, these new olim left from Kiev. In this article you can read the travel report of Aliyah field worker Koen Carlier!

At the synagogue
We drove with one hundred and fifty food parcels to the synagogue of Chernovtsy. There we spoke with the rabbi and had a spontaneous service in the synagogue. There we could tell a number of youngsters a bit more about our work and we gave them each our brochure.

“A Jewish man noticed: ‘You as Christians for Israel are called upon to be a blessing, like you can read in the Bible!'”

From the synagogue we took with us six olim (new immigrants) of four generations: a grandmother, a daughter and her husband, two grandchildren and a great-grandchild. The rabbi wished them all the best with their decision to leave for Israel. He joked that for every Jew who leaves for Israel two new Jews are added. He meant with this that there are still hidden Jews who are not associated with any organization.

“For every Jew leaving for Israel, two more are added!”

Boris and his family
From Odessa there were in total ten olim, amongst whom Boris, his wife Kayla and their six little children. Boris went through kindergarten and secondary school of Tikva’s children’s home in Odessa. However, only at the university he became religious. After his study he started assisting the social welfare program in the large Jewish community in Odessa.

Boris and Kayla had a good think about their future and that of their children. They wondered if they wanted their children to grow up in Ukraine or in Israel. It is a difficult choice, one that is not easily made. Ultimately, they decided to go to Israel.

“Boris and Kayla had a good think whether they wanted the children to grow up in Ukraine or in Israel”

The family had grown and helped with the Jewish community at Tikva in Odessa. They did pull their weight. That’s why this was not an easy choice. Tikva has a small centre in Jerusalem, where the family will stay in quarantine during the first two weeks. Furthermore, there is a fairly large community of Jewish families in Israel that was involved with the work of Tikva’s Children’s Home. Think for example of all the orphans who grew up in Odessa. They were so to speak, saved from the swamp and ultimately planted in Israel for good.

The departure for Israel
All thirty-two olim were taken to the airport and arrived safely and in time. This time only the people with a valid airline ticket were allowed into the departure hall. It was quite unique that our minibuses were allowed to park near the departure hall for free, as long as we wanted.

“But we will leave as well, who knows when we will make this single journey too!”

A few days ago, I spoke on the telephone with Michael Brodman, who is involved with Tikva’s work in Odessa. He told me that he felt an enormous emptiness now the family of Boris has left for Israel. “But we will leave as well, who knows when we will make this single journey too!”

In Isaiah 43 we read that God will make a new way in the wilderness, through which His people can go home. Thus it was for the thirty-two new immigrants who left for Israel on Monday, June 22, 2020.

Help the Jews come home!
Please support our action ‘Bring the Jews Home’.
It costs 135 euros or 165 US $ to assist one Jewish person from Ukraine for making aliyah.
Any amount is welcome!

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