Highlights of BYG in 2003
(This newsletter was prepared in November so we were unable to include highlights from our December campaigns in West Palm Beach and Sydney.)
Joseph Steinberg reports, On the last Monday night in July, near the end of the campaign, we held a special evangelistic night of music and story with Helen Shapiro and Stan Telchin at All Souls, Langham Place, a congregation in central London. Stan Telchin is well known for his story book Betrayed and Helen Shapiro is a well known for her singing career and her strong faith in Jesus. Betrayed was instrumental in Helen’s coming to faith.
“We were excited to see at least three people come to faith in Jesus—two Jewish people and one Gentile. One of those who prayed was Maureen. Maureen came with a friend of hers who is a Jewish believer in Jesus. After hearing Stan’s and Helen’s testimonies and messages from Scripture, she believed in Jesus as the Messiah and confessed Him as Lord. Please pray for God to continue to water the seeds that were sown that night.”
Allen Abrahamson reports, “While on Mercer Island, our team handed out broadsides at a city park. Steve Freedman handed the ‘Think for Yourself’ brochure to an 87-year-old Jewish man. There was very little conversation at the time. When I came around the park, I went up to the man and saw him writing his information in the brochure and he was crying. So I asked him if I could sit next to him on the park bench and we were able to discuss spiritual things. After ten minutes or so, he prayed to receive Jesus as his personal Savior. It then became clear to him why his Jewish mother was so happy the last 20 years of her life after she had come to faith in Messiah! And some day, mother and son will be united together in Heaven.”
(Our November Newsletter carried highlights and photos of the Cleveland campaign.)
Martin had just started college at Toronto University. He was on his skateboard when Francoise asked him “Who do you say Jesus is?” He received her witness and wanted to pray and receive Jesus. He took a Bible to study and skated away.
Former Liberated Wailing Wall leader R. Cohen returned to Canada to join the campaign. Was she ever surprised to see herself on the front page of the Canadian Jewish News. The photo showed her being harassed by anti-missionaries with her hands lifted high, praising the Lord in the face of adversity.
Rio De Janeiro
Rainy weather kept campaigners off the streets for most of the first week. As an alternative, they went to a mall in Copacabana, where many shop owners are Jewish. It was there that Regina—the first Jewish person to receive Jesus in her heart on the Rio BYG campaign—came to faith.
On the metro, as Margarita’s team returned from a sortie*, she noticed a well-dressed businessman looking at her Jews for Jesus shirt. He worked his way up from seat to seat until he finally sat down next to her and asked how can one be a Jew and believe in Jesus. Margarita asked him, “Are you a believer?” He responded, “What is a believer? I’m a Jew.” Luis was very interested and wanted more information. He promised to read Isaiah 53.
Susan Mendelson reports: “It was our final night of evangelistic phone calling and my last conversation of the evening was with a Jewish man named Cary. A former lawyer, he is now the president of a college campus. He recalled that we had recently been kicked off their campus and informed me, ‘That was wrong. As far as I’m concerned, you are allowed to be there.’ Then we started talking about the Lord and Cary agreed to receive our ISSUES publication (for Jewish seekers) to see what we are all about. When I told David Rothstein, campaign leader, about the call I discovered he was just deciding which campus we should go to for our last day of campaign! We returned to the campus where we’d been kicked off. This time, when the campus security approached us and told us we had to leave, I explained that we had permission from the president. As I saw the expression on his face, I marveled at God’s goodness and timing. We ended up having a really good time on campus, met lots of interested Jewish students and it was a great way to end campaign. Please pray for this man, Cary, to come to know Jesus.”
Larissa Savelieva reports, “Polina is a Jewish woman who repented during the Odessa campaign. We have been praying for her growth in Yeshua (Jesus). The first time I met with her for discipleship she said, ‘I want to live with the Bible, I want to be close to God.’ I invited her to attend a church where I know the Bible is taught. She attended and when we met again, she could talk of nothing else. I began to explain to Polina about baptism. The church was preparing to baptize a group of people the following month and I knew the church would want her to wait until the next group. So when we met again, I was surprised to hear that Polina had been baptized. It turns out that when the church council said it was too soon for her to be baptized, she began crying so inconsolably that members of the council prayed about it and offered to include her in the baptism. Polina has completely changed. She has fellowship, ministry and in general, her life is joyful now. I thank the Lord that she is starting to testify to her neighbors. Please pray that Polina will have boldness in her ministry.”
During the seven Behold Your God campaigns mentioned above, we handed out 2,119,400 broadsides, gathered names and addresses of 1,897 unbelieving Jews and 2,112 unbelieving Gentiles willing to hear more about Jesus and prayed with 262 Jews and 540 Gentiles to receive forgiveness and new life in Jesus. Please pray that God will continue the work begun in all these people’s lives.
*tract passing expedition