Belarus – Among the Few European Countries Without Stay-at-Home Orders

The Fellowship  |  June 16, 2020

Harelik-Astapchanak family, olim from Belarus, 2020
Father: Artur Harelik Mother: Sviatlana Astapchanka Daughter, age 7: Antanina Harelik Olim family wearing face masks in airport.

Watching a ballgame.

Walking in the park.

Meeting a friend for coffee.

At the beginning of this year, these were many of the things we all enjoyed, that we all took for granted…and that we no longer do because of the coronavirus pandemic.

But in some places around the world, life hasn’t changed…to tragic effect.

In Belarus, the president has claimed, “There are no viruses here.” And, hoping to keep its relatively young former Soviet Union (FSU) nation afloat, the Belarusian government has taken no measures against the COVID-19 outbreak.

Unlike Israel and the United States, Belarusians still gather to watch sports or dine in restaurants. And so the coronavirus is spreading, with no hope of slowing it. In such a global crisis, countries that do nothing to address the problem only endanger their own citizens.

But for the Jewish community of Belarus, there is an answer, there is a refuge, there is a light…

That light is “the light to the nations” that the prophet Isaiah wrote of (51:4).

That light is Israel.

Jews in places like Belarus already face raging anti-Semitism and crippling economic prospects. Now they must face an international pandemic, as well.

But because of prayers and support from friends like you, Israel has again opened her gates to God’s people, welcoming olim (Jewish immigrants) home to the Holy Land on Fellowship Freedom Flights. And because of you, families like the Harelik-Astapchanka family from Belarus, are now able to make aliyah (immigrate to Israel) and make new lives in their biblical homeland.

While Israel’s gates remain open, give your best gift today to bring Jews home to Israel.