A Lifetime of Commitment to Israel

The Fellowship  |  March 12, 2014

Read donor stories including how one woman was committed to helping suffering Jews in the former Soviet Union (FSU) through gift planning.

This is one of many IFCJ donor stories worth sharing. In the small town where Frances grew up, no one understood why the young woman was so committed to help suffering Jews in the former Soviet Union (FSU). From that time to now, Frances has committed her life to advocating that Jews be able to leave the FSU and move to Israel through awareness, generous donations, and gift planning.

Frances’s deep commitment began in college, where her Jewish roommates impacted her life in a significant way. They were loyal, loving, and treated her like a sister. They also told her about the plight of countless Jews, both young and elderly, who suffered with little or no safety net in countries where they were hated, but not allowed to leave.

After college, Frances went to Israel with one of her friends and began learning about what it meant for Jews to be able to “return” to a homeland they had never seen except in their dreams and prayers. While in Israel, Frances seized an opportunity to travel to Moscow. She was determined, with youthful exuberance, to lobby for the easing of travel restrictions for Soviet Jews, allowing them to move to Israel if they chose to do so.

Unfortunately, Frances’s family didn’t understand the importance of her passion for the Jewish people, and were angry about her trip to Moscow. Those were turbulent times, and “good Americans” just didn’t go to Russia. The family essentially abandoned Frances, doubting her patriotism. The people of Israel had suddenly become her only family.

Frances now lives in Illinois, where the family farm has been left to her, since she is the last member of her grandfather’s line. Frances leases the land to a neighboring farmer, and hundreds of acres of this prime farmland are producing corn and providing for our nation’s need for food and energy.

Her commitment to Israel is as strong as it ever has been, and during a recent visit with The Fellowship’s Yael Eckstein, Frances said, “For Israel! Everything for Israel! This is your inheritance.” Frances is supporting The Fellowship with her current gifts, and has arranged to have the farm provide financially for the Jewish people well into the future. As Yael said to Frances, “Your gift could literally change the lives of an entire Jewish village.”

If you would like to join Frances and establish a gift that goes beyond your lifetime, The Fellowship‘s estate planning staff can help. This gift will provide generously for your family now, create a legacy that will bless Israel, and share your values with those who are left behind. This can be a true legacy of your faithfulness to your family and to the Jewish people.

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