January 18, 2018
Dear Friend of Israel,
Next week, my daughter Yael will be honored to attend an address at the Knesset (Israel’s parliament) by U.S. Vice President Mike Pence, who will be in Israel as part of a three-country diplomatic tour of the Middle East.
The Vice President is a true friend of Israel. A devout Christian, he has close and longstanding relationships with both Israeli and American Jewish leaders, and has proven over time that he understands the challenges Israel faces, and supports her in her ongoing quest for peace and security.
Vice President Pence’s trip comes at a time when U.S. policies toward Israel are shifting. For more than 20 years, for instance, U.S. presidents, both Democrats and Republicans, had promised that the U.S. would recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel – but they didn’t follow through on that promise.
All that changed in December when President Trump made his bold announcement that the U.S. recognizes Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. Along with this, there have been many moves – such as the U.S.’s tough stance toward anti-Israel activities at the United Nations – that indicate that things are no longer “business as usual.”
Any departure from the accepted way of doing things carries with it some risk. But I prefer to believe that we are in a time of new opportunities and possibilities. We should pray for wisdom for Israeli and American leaders, as they seek both to support the Jewish state and to help her realize the dream of a secure and lasting peace – a dream that has eluded Israel throughout her nearly 70 years of existence.
When Yael attends the Vice President’s speech she will not just be representing The Fellowship – she will be representing you, all of The Fellowship’s friends. Your support for Jewish people in need around the world and advocacy on behalf of Israel is such an incredible blessing. As we continue to work together, let us also continue to pray for the day when God blesses us with his most precious gift of shalom, peace.
Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein
Founder and President