More from Urbana . . .
Jews for Jesus staff, interns and student volunteers at Urbana
Here’s what they’re like when no one is looking.
Sharing a meal with colleagues from other Jewish missions
The Urbana conference was focused on providing students with an opportunity to commit to missions, and to that end it was a very positive experience for the students that we sponsored to attend the conference: two of our students made new commitments to missions, and several reaffirmed the commitments they had already made. Much of the conference was focused on social and environmental justice. As an organization, Jews for Jesus’ presence at Urbana helped raise the image that Jewish missions is still important, and that direct evangelism is still needed.
Our workshop, “How to witness to your Jewish roommate” led by Sara Friedman, attracted 102 students from the conference and that was very encouraging. On the second to last night of the conference we had a “solidarity meal” with people from the other Jewish missions agencies that were represented at Urbana. It was a wonderful experience for us to come together and talk about the issues necessary to keep Jewish evangelism on the forefronts of people’s minds within the context of global missions.
Our shirts (with ‘Jews for Jesus’ on the back, and ‘Jewish people still need Jesus’ on the front) attracted a lot of positive attention from those around us who were glad to see Jews for Jesus represented at the conference. One of our big fans was Alec Hill, the president of Intervarsity USA, who approached our team to express his appreciation for our presence at the conference. We attended the conference to spread the message that was read on our T-shirts “Because Jewish People Still Need Jesus: Jews For Jesus!” and to that end we were successful!
Campaigners pray with and for those who are seeking God.
Carmit Verreyne reports: “At Waterfront, I met two Israeli women. One told me that it’s so nice to hear Hebrew and meet Israelis here in Cape Town. She asked me what I was doing here, and I said, ‘You don’t want to know.’ She asked me why, so I told her that I’m a Jew who believes in Jesus and showed her my T-shirt. But the woman said she likes to meet everyone regardless of what they believe.
“She then explained that she is married to an Orthodox man, has nine children and does not believe in the Bible. She said that even if what I say about Jesus is true, she could never follow it. While she was open to hear my beliefs, she made it clear that it would be too costly for her to ‘go there.’ We ended the conversation with a huge hug.”
Jason Verreyne says: “At Sea Point Main Road, an Israeli walked past me and said ‘lo toda’ (no thank you) to the tract I had offered her. It seemed obvious from her sarcastic tone that she’d seen the Hebrew words on my shirt and assumed I couldn’t speak the language. I replied in Hebrew, ‘It’s a pleasure. Have a wonderful day!’ She was so surprised; she gave me a friendly smile, changed her tone, and started asking me who I am and how I know Hebrew. I shared the gospel with her. While she wasn’t too keen on accepting it, she listened, then politely said bye.”
Michael Sischy reports: “At Clifton beach, I met an angry man who said some abusive things, then stormed off muttering that we should not be ‘Jews for Jesus,’ but ‘losers for Jesus!’ On thinking about this, I realized he was actually correct. We are ‘losers for Jesus’ in the sense that we lose that which we can’t keep (the temporary things of this world) to gain that which we can’t lose (eternal life).”