“ ‘Yes, I will rejoice over them to do them good, and I will assuredly plant them in this land, with all My heart and with
all My soul.’ ”
Jeremiah 32:41 (NKJV)
Planted in the Land.
Aliyah and klitah are important purposes of God for His Jewish people. There is no successful aliyah without successful absorption. Absorption is successful when Jewish people coming home to Israel become planted in the Land and do not go back to live in the Diaspora. Amazingly, as the above Scripture from the prophet Jeremiah says, this is something that the LORD God of Israel is determined to do with all His heart and with all His soul.
To support this purpose of God, Ebenezer opened its Jerusalem office in 2006 under the supervision of Shirley Lawrenson, Olim Liaison. The central aim and focus of the office is to reach out to olim who are just beginning or are already in the midst of the process of making a new life in Israel.
The Jerusalem office assists those whom Ebenezer has directly helped to make aliyah and others as well. We seek to be a friend during a major time of transition in Jewish people’s lives, providing comfort and encouragement. We offer listening ears and a compassionate heart as the olim share about their struggles to settle in the Land.
We also offer practical advice concerning such specific challenges of absorption such as education, employment, finances, health, housing, insurance, language, military service, and more. In emergency situations, we buy food parcels, pay for utility bills, and assist with other needs. In certain instances, our care can make a vital difference as to whether olim choose to stay or leave.
The Jerusalem office's practical advice also includes linking individuals with both the social services and other organizations, which have the relevant expertise and resources to offer longer-term assistance. In this regard, Shirley receives support from Iris Goldman, who became Office Administrator in 2008. An immigrant from the United States, Iris performs research and maintains information databases to help the olim. She is based in the office to respond to e-mails, telephone calls, and visitors, allowing Shirley the flexibility to minister to olim in their homes and elsewhere.
It is a privilege for the Jerusalem office to come alongside the LORD God of Israel to assist His Jewish people to be planted in their Land. May He “rejoice over them to do them good,” and may we rejoice as we see the olim taking root in the Land of Israel.