The Building Project in Israel
Christians all over the world are following with fascination the final completing of the building of the first Protestant church in Israel for a century. On the morning of June 22 2004 Baruch Maoz composed the following report: "We are excited and thankful. By the time you receive this letter, the dome of our building should be in place. We have spent the last few weeks fine-tuning its engineering, constructing the re-bar and the forms for the cement base and pouring the concrete, which is presently curing. By July 18th, the dome should be in place. All we will have left are some finishing touches.
Meanwhile, we have continued laying the floor with tiles generously provided for us by brethren in the Netherlands. During the month of July we will have two volunteers assisting us, one from the USA and another from Germany. More are welcome. If you are interested in working with us for 4 weeks or longer on a volunteer basis, please get in touch with us through: <email@example.com>. We are able to provide food and lodging, and plenty of hard work. Volunteers are expected to pay their own way, provide their insurance and come with sufficient pocket money.
The next major challenges before us are the glass block and aluminium windows (about $55,000) and the cladding of the building (about $85,000) in order to protect the building from the ravages of a third winter. Our brethren in the Netherlands have undertaken to find resources to ship to us a quantity of wood that would enable us to do a great deal of the carpentry ourselves.
We are grateful to the Dutch brethren, who proved so generous in their aid to us. They established a special fund and sent some $500,000 worth of aid, most of it financial. They have also encouraged many to pray for us. They now believe that they have exhausted the goodwill of most of their supporters and that it would be best for them to seek another project rather than continue with the construction of our centre. I take this opportunity to thank them publicly for all they have done for us and for the spirit in which it was done. We shall await the kindness of our Lord in order to continue the project and bring it to a close.
Having run out of funds for the present we have had to let Vladimir go and to stall the work of our Project Manager. This is the first time we have ever had to stall work for lack of funds, and we are confident that the Lord, who has shown his good hand toward us for so long, will continue to do so. Vasili and his team of volunteers will continue the work as best they can, bringing us ever closer to completion. Once the glass and aluminium is installed and carpentry has begun, we will be in a position to see the end of the project in view. Once the building is clad, we will be all that closer to completion.
We thank God that, throughout the process, there have been no accidents, no injuries and no damages to property apart from those premeditatedly perpetrated by one or two of the contractors. Please keep praying – your prayers are being heard."
Baruch continues: In the evening, returning from work, I received a telephone call from Pirkko Saila, a very dear friend in Finland, the Middle East and Africa Director for Patmos International. Pirkko had been very ill and we had been earnestly praying for her. From time to time we heard her health was improving, so I was delighted to hear her voice over the car telephone.
After enquiring about each other’s health and the blessing of the Lord on each other’s labours. Pirkko told me how pleased she was to have heard that we have received the $1,000,000 which were lacking to complete construction. To her chagrin, I had to inform her that such is not the case. In fact, we had just informed staff that, as of July 1st, the work is to screech to an halt. Somehow, a former issue of MaozNews, which related the history of our building project and mentioned an anonymous donor who had contributed a total of $1,000,000 over the years, was taken to tell of a recent gift of that size.
Pirkko was taken aback and expressed her disappointment (which disappointment we surely share!). God had brought us to the very extremity. A member of the congregation had suggested that we call for a day of fasting and prayer, but the general response was unequivocal: we will fast and pray for holiness, for God’s presence, for conversions – not for money!
Next day, June 23rd, I received a short note from Pirkko:
We will transfer 25 000 just today and then starting from August 10 000 per month until the end of the year – hoping this will help you with the building.
Have a blessed day in Jesus
What can I say? Our friends are friends indeed, and God has shown himself once again to be for us. If he is for us, who can be against us?!
Thank you, brethren for praying. Thank you, for helping us as you have so far financially. Pray with us that we will make the best use of these added resources, and of any others that might be given us. A hearty and public thanks to Patmos International for their love, trust and fellowship in the Gospel.
MaozNews A periodic report from Israel. Tel. +972 8 869 2542, Fax. +972 8 869 2531, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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