Even though summer weather continues in Israel until well into October, as August draws to a close and September begins, we mark the end of summer. Probably because school begins on the 1st of September. So last night, a few friends of mine got together to mark the end of summer by going out to the beach in Herzliya. We were five middle-aged women, at the shore of the Mediterranean Sea, sitting on blankets or beach chairs, chatting. We watched and listened to the waves crashing onto the shore, we got our feet wet in the water, and we breathed the fresh sea air.
A few weeks ago, we held our first annual CFOIC Heartland Conference of Judea and Samaria communities. This was a dream of mine for some time — to gather together in one room the representatives of all the communities we work with as well as the various mayors, to share experiences and ideas and just interact with one another.
I know for many who love Israel and follow the Hebraic roots of our faith, whether or not to celebrate Christmas can be a real struggle. And I usually get some chastising notes and emails from well-meaning folks who are aghast that I allow a pagan Christmas tree in my home, when I should know better! So I will apologize in advance if talking about Christmas or saying “Merry Christmas” is offensive to you.
In just one afternoon, I’d fallen in love with the strong pioneering attitude of the residents, the winding roads and lush greenery and bright homes, and the magnificent sunset panoramas of Einav. It is a place so vital to the pumping heartbeat of the Biblical Heartland, and a place well worth protecting.
Do you want to visit the Holy Land? I can remember as a child dreaming of a visit to the Land of Israel. In those days, it was such a far-fetched idea, that it seemed as realistic as flying to the moon. I still remember my very first trip to Israel, the incredible rush of emotion as the plane touched down at Ben Gurion Airport. As the palm trees flashed by the window, I was unable to stop the tears flowing down my face. My heart was so full and I hadn’t even stepped foot off of the plane yet! Even today, I still get that same rush of emotion every time my plane touches down on the runway at Ben Gurion. There is nothing like coming home to Israel.
During the past six months, ever since I started working at CFOIC Heartland, I have met extraordinary people and visited amazing communities. It has been a true pleasure and an eye- opening experience for me to play a part in the wonderful relationship that has been created between our Christian friends and the people of Judea and Samaria. As a resident of Samaria for the past four years, I feel blessed to be able to live my life, build a home and raise my children in this very special area of our beautiful country.
As I drove down Route 60 one night, otherwise known as the ancient Path of the Patriarchs, my heart filled with joy. This is the Biblical Heartland, where Abraham first received the promise of the land! And it is truly growing with modern communities. Every group of twinkling lights means another part of the prophecy is being fulfilled,another neighborhood is growing in Judea and Samaria. As I travelled down the road and looked up at the mountains to my right, I rejoiced in one of the smallest of these communities: Nofei Nechemia!
By: Tessy Agassi A couple of weeks ago I had the opportunity to join the head of security in Shaarei Tikva, on a tour of the community. It wasn’t my first visit there — I have had family members living there for many years. But it was the first time I was exposed to the safety … Read more