Meet Our New Trainees!
Shawn hails from Toronto. Both his parents are Jewish, but do not yet know Jesus. Shawn was kicked out of Hebrew school when, at age ten, he told his teachers that he was an atheist. This seemed, to him, the logical conclusion of the evolution theory he was learning in grade school. However, he was able to resume his Jewish education and have his bar mitzvah at age thirteen.
Shawn remained an atheist until age twenty, at which time he discovered a video series by Dr. Kent Hovind regarding the creation vs. evolution debate. The series convinced him that evolution was a lie, and once he believed in God and the Bible, he came to understand that Jesus is the Messiah. Shawn graduated from Tyndale University with a BA in religious studies and philosophy. In 2006 he began a YouTube channel for preaching the gospel and it became the most subscribed to Christian channel on the Internet. He is especially interested in creating videos that can reach people with the gospel.
Shawn was one of our first time participants on this year’s New York City Summer Witnessing Campaign!
David and Rachel Liebman
We introduced David Liebman to you in our June 2010 newsletter, as he had just been voted on as an associate staff member. At the time, he was attending seminary in Phoenix. Now a graduate and married to Rachel (they met through Jews for Jesus summer programs), David is ready to begin his missionary training.
Like David, Rachel has been involved with various Jews for Jesus summer programs from a young age, including Halutzim, Camp Gilgal, New York City Summer Witnessing Campaign and Massah. Her mom is Jewish, and Rachel grew up in a Messianic home. She prayed at a very young age to receive the Lord, but at age thirteen, she had a landmark experience with her youth group—and her faith became real to her in a new way. Rachel has an associates degree in dental hygiene and up till now has been practicing in that field. Now she will see which is more like pulling teeth: getting people to open their mouth to a sharp object, or seeing them open their hearts to the truth of Jesus!
Sam also grew up in a Messianic home (both parents are believers, Mom is Jewish), and while he knew about God from an early age, he has counted himself a believer since 2008. Sam and his brother Josh (who was a summer intern with us at Camp Gilgal West) attended our Midwest Camp Gilgal as kids.
Sam graduated from Biola University with BA in biblical and theological studies and from there went on our summer witnessing campaign. After that, he stayed in New York for an internship in our branch; in fact last month’s newsletter contained a campus witnessing encounter from Sam.
David also grew up in a believing home with a Jewish mom and several generations of pastors on his dad’s side. Nevertheless, like Sam, it wasn’t until 2008 that he surrendered his heart to God. When he became serious about the Lord and wanted a change of scene and a change of friends, Jhan and Melissa Moskowitz opened their home to him. (Jhan is our North American Director and Melissa is part of our young adult ministry. They host weekly Shabbat fellowships, among other community-related activities.)
David has a BA in business administration, but never had much interest in a business career. After volunteering as staff for a Camp Gilgal Wonderful Winter Weekend, he began volunteering with Elisheva R, who is one of the leaders in our children and youth ministry (CYM). He knew that he had found God’s calling and applied to join us for full-time children and youth ministry.
Giselle has been part of our ministry for several years; you may have read an introduction to Giselle in our November 2010 newsletter, as she was a member of our Blue Mosaic music team. Following her tour with BluMo, she participated in ECHAD, a small community of Jewish believers in Jesus committed to using their creative gifts for evangelism (see Jan 2012 newsletter). From Sydney, Australia, Giselle was raised in a Messianic home and has believed in Jesus from an early age. She is a gifted musician and songwriter.
As you pray for the fall class of Jews for Jesus trainees, please pray also for Amer Olson and Karol Joseph as they lead our training program.
We are thankful to God for this training class, and to you for praying for these and other young Jewish believers in Jesus who are eager to help make the Messiahship of Jesus an unavoidable issue to our Jewish people worldwide.
If you are interested in knowing more about the short-term opportunities (mentioned in the above article) that we offer for young Jewish believers in Jesus check out our web pages for