Prayer Letter — August 2019

Dear Prayer Partners,

Shalom and greetings from Jerusalem! With the Bahrain “Peace to Prosperity Workshop” behind us and the September re-elections drawing near, the month of August is a great month to pray into some key social issues in Israel.

Please join us in interceding on behalf of Israel for:

Economic Freedom in Judea and Samaria
For a long time now, the Palestinian Authority has failed to direct immense amounts of funding towards improving the economic situation for those living in the Judea and Samaria region of Israel. After the “Peace to Prosperity Workshop” in Bahrain this past month, the Palestinian Authority sought to arrest multiple businessmen who attended the workshop. Their offense? Attending the workshop. While many other Arab nations expressed support of Israel during the workshop, the Palestinian Authority continues to rely on sabotaging those who would seek a better economy in the Judea and Samaria region. The Palestinian Authority is even now considering cessation of security cooperation with Israel. Please pray for all of those who have the ability to improve the living conditions in Judea and Samaria to be blessed and released to implement their ideas without being hindered any further by the corrupt leaders of the Palestinian Authority. Pray for bold leaders in Israel to stand up for those living in Judea and Samaria and to put an end to the corruption in that region and bring about necessary reforms to see all within Israel’s borders free to pursue whatever business ideas or work opportunities they desire.

Medical Care
Hospitals and clinics in Israel are at an all-time low in quality of care. Even though Israeli medical research is among the most advanced in the world, medical care in Israel is somewhat in disarray. Physicians are spending an average of only 10 minutes per patient, excessive emergency room visits for non-urgent issues often leads to long waits for those who are visiting the emergency room for urgent issues, and doctors are often faced with diagnosing issues that they are unqualified to address. For instance, many doctors are expected to treat the elderly and children without any formal education in geriatric or pediatric care. Due to a high patient to doctor ratio, many doctors are getting burned out and some of the most specialized doctors are either retiring early or emigrating to other nations with more manageable workloads for doctors. Furthermore, there is a general lack of space in Israeli hospitals for those in need of care. According to a recent Health Ministry report, there are only 1.78 hospital beds per one thousand Israelis, a 30-year low. Please pray that as we approach Israel’s September re-elections, we will also see a shift in the government that will bring about much needed reform in Israel’s medical care.

Primary and Secondary Education
The Israeli primary and secondary education system has long faced the challenge of receiving a high number of students immigrating with their families from other nations. These students are faced with the challenge of learning Hebrew and adapting to Israel’s education system. In addition to the challenge of receiving students coming from other nations and integrate them into the classroom, teachers are also faced with significantly more crowded classrooms than other developed nations. Although there is no shortage of teachers in Israel (enough for there to be a 15 to 1 ration of students per teacher), the average ratio of students per classroom in Israel is 28 to 1. One further issue can be seen in the high correlation between a mother’s education level and the performance of her child in school. There is a significant gap in performance in Israeli schools depending on maternal education. This suggests that Israeli education is failing to meet the needs of students from varying home environments. While Israeli educational methods are among the most advanced in the world, Israeli students are struggling to keep up in the chaotic educational environment created by overcrowded classrooms and therefore less capacity for teachers to care for individual student needs. Finally, educators are underpaid and overworked (a common issue in many nations but especially in Israel). Please pray for educators and schools in Israel. Pray that the education budget will be an increasing priority and that Israeli students will enjoy increasingly quality education and truly reap the benefits of learning with some of the most advanced educational methods in the world.

Equality in Service to Country
Until now, Israel has only mandated that Jewish Israelis who do not study in a Yeshiva are to serve in the military or in some social service immediately following high school. This means that many in Israel who are enjoying the security provided by Israel’s military as well as other government services are exempt from themselves contributing their own term of service. The Druze community, of their own volition has consistently voluntarily participated in Israel’s military, but ultra orthodox Jews and most Arab Israelis have typically refused to serve in the military. This has become a hot topic in Israel with no clear solutions at present. Please pray for those working on a way to encourage all Israelis to serve their country, regardless of religious or ethnic background. Pray that there would be a spirit of solidarity and brotherhood in Israel that would supersede all political convictions and see increasing service to country and compassion others regardless of ethnic or religious differences.

Summer Travel & Preparations for Back to School
Israeli families will be traveling the month of August, especially since most summer camps finished in July. There will be travel on the road, in the air, within Israel and outside of Israel for families and individuals from all parts of Israeli society. Please pray for safety in their travels, for protection from any hostile attacks abroad, and for times of rest for Israelis, most of whom live in stressful conditions with economic and political pressures always at the forefront. Please also pray for quality time together for families and that for those who are not able to travel, that they would still experience the Lord's renewal and refreshment in their times of rest at home. Lastly, please pray for all families who will begin to get their children ready to go back to school on September 1st; may they have all the resources necessary to purchase books, supplies, and uniforms.

Following are some ministry requests for Hope for Israel:

Moran & Family
Moran and his family are currently traveling in Ohio and California on a summer ministry trip. Moran has been on the road since July 16th, and has been blessed with an incredibly fruitful time of ministering and teaching to many people in various states. He has met new people and has been blessed to reconnect with old friends and ministry partners. Please continue to pray for him as he still has three more weeks of traveling, only now it will be with his wife and children, which they are all looking forward to! Please continue to also pray for safety in their travels, and for times of rest for them in the midst of the ministry travels.

HFI Board
Please pray for protection over all of HFI’s board members and their families. Pray that the Lord would shield them from illness and spiritual warfare. Please also pray for healing for several of the board members' spouses from various diseases and for strength during these difficult health challenges.

NerYah Youth Group
Please keep each and every one of the youth in your prayers during the remainder of their summer vacation from school. Pray that they will find NerYah to be a place of encouraging fellowship and guidance through the challenges they face as youth in Israeli society. Please also pray for Zechariah as he continues in his position as the male youth leader, and also for a blessing over Efrat, our new female youth leader! She will be joining our staff in mid-August and we are so excited to welcome her. Please also continue to pray for more male & female volunteers to work with the youth.

Soldiers’ Group
Please pray for the soldiers both that they will excel and that they will be strengthened by God to remain strong in the faith despite the many challenges they face. Pray that God will use them powerfully also to encourage those around them as they experience a level of discipline that they have never before encountered. Please also pray for God’s protection over them as they serve in a place where war is always a possibility.

Foundations of the Faith Book
Please continue to pray that every copy of this discipleship resource will have a personal impact on those who read it and draw many into an increasingly deeper relationship with God! Please pray for a wider distribution of the book, that it will reach many people and that they will be strengthened and challenged. We currently have the book printed in Hebrew, English, Russian, & Spanish.

“Israel Beyond the Headlines” Video Project
We began this special project last year to celebrate the miracle of Israel’s 70th year of independence (click hereclick here to check it out). This is a video project where we produce short videos highlighting a different aspect of Israeli innovation that is making a difference in the world. This project is a means of Israel advocacy, which is an important part of our call as the Body of Messiah throughout the world. But of course, this is also a threat to the enemy and we have experienced some warfare in this area. Please pray for us as we continue to produce powerful & effective videos, and for all involved in this project: Lior, Moran, Nate, Elad & Melissa. Please pray for His protection over us all and for the truth about Israel to reach to the ends of the earth!

Please continue to join us in praying for all our tours to be a blessing both to those who join and a blessing to the work of Hope for Israel. We host multiple tours each year (click here to learn more). These tours generate income for the ministry, which goes to cover our overhead, thus allowing a higher percentage of donations to go to our projects. Please pray for those joining us on these tours to be blessed and to grow in their walk with the Lord. Pray also for Moran and those leading the tours with him for peace and wisdom, and for unity among the leadership team of the tours.

Thank you for joining us in prayer for these things! May the Lord bless you.

In His Service,
The Hope for Israel Prayer Team

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