More than 500 evangelical Christians and Jews from across North America gathered at Mar-a-Lago on March 25 for the “Together in Fellowship” gala. (Credit: Capehart Photography)
As many as 500 evangelical Christians and Jews from around the world gathered on Sunday night at U.S. President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Fla.—otherwise known as the “Winter White House”—for a one-of-a-kind event celebrating Israel’s upcoming 70th anniversary, as well as the unity of Christians and Jews supporting the Jewish state.
Hosted by the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (also known as “The Fellowship”), the “Together In Fellowship” gala on Palm Sunday raised $1.67 million that will be put towards two causes: a new educational campaign for the next generation of Christians and Jews to help deepen their bonds with Israel and the Jewish people; and helping elderly Holocaust survivors living in poverty by providing them with food, medicine, heating fuel and personal visits they desperately need in their final years. The latter is already one of the more than 400 global initiatives undertaken by The Fellowship.
“It’s a great honor to have everybody at Mar-a-Lago, a special place for a special group of people,” Trump told the gathering in a video message recorded shortly before the gala. The president left his weekend retreat several hours before the start of the event to head back to Washington, D.C. “I wanted to be there so badly. I had to leave—we have some pretty big things going on with our country, but our country is doing really well. Your taxes are down, your regulations are down, a lot of good things are happening, we’re appointing a lot of fantastic federal judges, and I think you are all very happy with the results. So I’ll see you next time. I hope you have a fantastic evening.”
Guests hailed from throughout the United States, Canada, Israel, the Netherlands, Jamaica and Brazil. Half were Christian, half were Jewish. The evening began with a VIP poolside reception, with hors d’oeuvres and drinks, followed by a general sit-down reception and three-course meal inside Mar-a-Lago’s exquisite ballroom.
The Fellowship’s founder and president, Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein, started off the evening speaking about the gala’s distinctiveness. He told the crowd: “Tonight is the first time I believe in history where Christians together with Jews are celebrating the 70th anniversary of the state of Israel. It’s not Christians inviting Jews and Jews inviting Christians; it’s Christians and Jews, and that is the theme for us tonight . . . there were those who were dubious, there was those who said no it cannot be done, and here we are together.”
Eckstein also talked about the organization’s new headquarters, “The Fellowship House,” which will be, as he said, a “home away from home” for the 1.5 million Christians who visit Israel each year. The rabbi said it will be located “right next door” to the new U.S. embassy in Jerusalem—an announcement that drew loud applause from the crowd. He noted that Israeli American billionaire Haim Saban is one of the Fellowship’s “greatest supporters,” who has contributed $1 million towards the new headquarters.
The decision to hold the event at Trump’s South Florida property was likely a strategic decision by Eckstein. His organization draws heavily from support by evangelical Christians, who also overwhelmingly support Trump and have applauded his policies towards Israel, such as his recognition of Jerusalem as its capital. It also comes as last year many charities and other organized canceled event plans at Mar-a-Lago following Trump’s controversial remarks after a white-supremacist rally that turned violent in Charlottesville, Va.
‘A new era where Israel wins’
Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations Danny Danon received The Fellowship’s “Defender of Israel Award” at the gala and told JNS that in representing Israel at the United Nations, “sometimes I feel that I am alone, but I know that I am not. I know that we have millions of Christians and Jews who support Israel. And tonight is a sign of the great support that we have from different countries around the world.”
The ambassador also talked about Israel’s upcoming seven-decade anniversary, saying he believes it’s a “miracle” that Israel has come so far and accomplished so much in such a short period of time. He told JNS.org “we are very proud of what we have achieved in the short 70 years,” adding that he will be celebrating the landmark by taking 70 ambassadors from the world body on a trip to Israel.
On stage at the gala, Danon talked about U.S.-Israel relations, especially at the United Nations. He said U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley once told him that as long as she is around, America “will always have Israel’s back.”
“[It’s] the strongest alley we have,” said Danon. “Seventy years later, the U.S. remains the first country to stand by Israel through thick and thin, and there is nowhere I feel that more than what I feel at the U.N. … Me and Ambassador Haley, we play defense and offense.”
(From left) Israeli Ambassador to the U.N. Danny Danon and The Fellowship Founder and President Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein at the “Together in Fellowship” gala. (Credit: Capehart Photography)
He also addressed the five resolutions against Israel passed at the United Nations on Friday, saying, “I’m telling you now, [the] U.S. will take action and Israel will take action [against them].”
Danon’s late father taught him about speaking up and “standing strong” in support of Israel, he told the audience. He said, “Nowhere have I felt the importance of my father’s words more than at the U.N. It’s why I came to the U.N. I heard stories about this place. I didn’t realize how bad it was until I arrived, but let me tell you, today we are shaking things up at the U.N. We are bringing a new future for Israel at the U.N. A new era where Israel wins.”
The Fellowship also honored Museum of the Bible Chairman and Hobby Lobby President Steve Green, and VitaQuest Founder Edward Frankel with a Bridge Builder Award. The event’s keynote speaker was former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
‘Where religious freedom and religious tolerance flourishes’
During his speech, Harper said Trump “deserves enormous credit and congratulations” for recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. “That was one of the rare times I actually wish I was back in office, and I could’ve stood and done that with President Trump,” he said.
The former premier additionally spoke of his “clear” and “very consistent” defense of Israel, and his “special admiration” for the Jewish state. He said his ancestors have always been pro-Jewish, and told the audience that his father was a “life-longer admirer of the Jewish people,” and a “strong and vocal opponent” of anti-Semitism in Canada.
Former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper speaking at the “Together in Fellowship” gala at Mar-a-Lago. (Credit: Capehart Photography)
Harper discussed radical Islam and the Iranian regime, particularly the Iranian nuclear program that threatens both Israel and Western nations. He then talked about the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement and urged pro-Israel supporters that “whenever we encounter [BDS], we should denounce it vocally, loudly and with every fiber of our being.”
He concluded his speech by insisting that Israel is not at fault for the lack of peace in the Middle East. “It is not because of anything Israel had done or not done,” he said in his final remarks. “It is not because of Israel’s failures or imperfections, Israel’s existence or policies. … In too many countries, it is still easier to scapegoat Israel then copy its success, and it’s only in Israel where religious freedom and religious toleration flourishes in the Middle East.
“I tell my friends in politics around the world, never be afraid to take the right position on Israel. And I also tell organizations like this, never be reluctant to be proud of Israel. … [It is] an oasis of wealth, freedom, culture, technology and security in the most dangerous and troubled part of the world. I think Israel may be the most remarkable country that has ever been created.”
Read more at https://www.breakingisraelnews.com/105030/christians-and-jews-celebrate-israels-upcoming-70th-anniversary-at-trumps-mar-a-lago/#LzZxIFAud6v0D9cm.99
Jeremy Corbyn leads a pro-Palestinian demonstration in London in 2014, one year before becoming Labour Party leader. Photo: File.
This marked a massive rise from the previous such survey, in which only 39% of Jews believed Corbyn was antisemitic.
British Jews also expressed an extremely low opinion of the Labour Party in general. The poll showed that 85.6% believed Labour suffered from “very high” levels of antisemitism.
Corbyn and his party have been beset with a series of high-profile antisemitism scandals for several years, which has resulted in the resignation and suspension of several prominent officials. Corbyn himself was recently caught on video saying that “Zionists” did not understand “English irony” despite “having lived in this country for a very long time.”
Makuya in Jerusalem 201 (YouTube)
Like an apple tree among trees of the forest, So is my beloved among the youths. I delight to sit in his shade, And his fruit is sweet to my mouth. (Song of Songs 2:3)
For ten days in late August, Israeli Rabbi Benny Lau and his wife, Rabbanit Noah Lau, traveled from Jerusalem to Japan to lead Bible study for groups of Makuya Japanese Christians. The Laus traveled to five Japanese towns and spent three days together at a weekend conference with 3,400 members of the Makuya group.
Makuya is Japanese for the Hebrew word Mishkan, the tent of meeting, where human beings come into contact with God. The Mishkan was the portable sanctuary that the Israelites used in the desert, before entering Israel and building the First Holy Temple.
The Lord tests the righteous, but his soul hates the wicked and the one who loves violence. (Psalm 11:5)
Brazilian presidential candidate Jair Bolsonaro. (Credit: Agencia O Globo)
Jair Bolsonaro, the front-runner in the upcoming presidential election in Brazil, was stabbed during a campaign rally Thursday and was undergoing surgery.
The far-right politician, whose heated rhetoric has electrified some voters and angered others – -who accuse him of racism and homophobia – in a deeply polarized electorate, was attacked amid a crowd in the south-east state of Minas Gerais. Bolsonaro has performed strongly in recent opinion polls.
Those same polls suggested that he will likely receive the most votes in next month’s presidential elections, especially if the country’s former president Luis Inacio Lula da Silva (‘Lula’) remains blocked from standing. He is currently in prison, but is appealing against his candidacy ban – imposed after his conviction for corruption.
Republican lawmakers have made it clear they have no intention of repealing Obamacare in the current Congress.
Republicans in the nation’s top lawmaking body have never really wanted to get rid of Obamacare. They would prefer to present the program, which David Horowitz correctly describes as “the greatest assault on individual freedom and individual choice in our lifetimes,” as a villain and whip up sentiment against it and run against it every election. They view Obamacare as good for the business of politics. They may chip away at it from time to time or tinker with it at the margins, but make no mistake: these creatures of Washington want to keep it in place. This is the Republicans’ dirty secret.
The Trump administration has decided to reopen a case brought by a Zionist group against Rutgers University, previously closed by the Obama administration in 2014, alleging that the university had allowed Jewish students to be subjected to a hostile environment in violation of Title VI of the U.S. Civil Rights Act. The issue, ignored by the Obama administration, was whether the students were discriminated against based on their actual or perceived Jewish ancestry or ethnicity. Kenneth L. Marcus, the new assistant secretary of education for civil rights, decided that the case deserved another look.
Nestled in the Han River in the middle of South Korea’s bustling capital of Seoul, Yeoui Island is hardly where one would expect to find the largest mega-church in the world. Home to the city’s business and financial district, its skyline dotted with skyscrapers, the island boasts some of the country’s most powerful institutions, such as the Korean stock exchange and the headquarters of LG, the international conglomerate.
The AfD’s opponents, who often brand the party as “far right” or “extremist,” claim that the party’s alleged ties to neo-Nazi groups pose an existential threat to Germany’s constitutional order. The AfD’s supporters counter that Germany’s politically correct establishment, afraid of losing its power and influence, is attempting to outlaw a legitimate party that has pledged to put the interests of German citizens first.
Israel’s Palestinian foes regard “martyrdom” as the supremely highest expression of Islamic sacredness. Nonetheless, there are certain conspicuously prominent disjunctions between the relevant obligations of faith and expectations of international law. Unambiguously, only the latter set of obligations can offer a suitably authoritative source for assessing Palestinian resorts to armed force.
This is the case even when the stated objective of such resorts would be “self-determination” and/or “national liberation.”
“Setting fire to the ground,” a “major catastrophe,” bringing “new instability” are the headlines that have greeted Donald Trump’s unorthodox decisions over the past year. Withdrawing from UNESCO, moving the US Embassy, leaving the Iran deal and cutting funding to UNRWA and funding for Pakistan were seen as extreme decisions in the Middle East and around the world. Insofar as there is a “Trump Doctrine,” it has been to call this bluff.
In the mind-set of Trump and his team, the time has come for the United States to move quickly to reverse decades of foreign policy norms, ending the status quo, and ripping up what the previous administrations did.
The jihadi assault on and massacre of Christians continued unabated throughout the Muslim word. According to one report titled, “Armed gangs WIPE OUT 15 villages in mass Christian slaughter in Nigeria,” several Islamic terrorists “stormed through 15 villages to massacre Christians and destroy their churches in a violent crackdown against the religion…. Dozens of people have been killed after the gangs ransacked towns and villages to clear them of all aspects of the Christian faith.
Wars are raging in various parts of the Middle East, although there is a tendency not to call the conflicts by that name because of the fear conjured up by the word.
One conflagration is the war Iran is waging against those – headed by Israel – who stand in the way of its plans to take over the entire Middle East.
Another is the Assad regime’s war to take back control of the entire country, and a third is the PLO’s battle for survival.
Much has been written about the first of these wars, and reports have claimed that from early 2017 on, Israel has launched over 200 attacks in Syria, mainly at targets connected to Iran.