Pastor Victor Styrsky, national outreach director and eastern regional coordinator for Christians United for Israel traveled this fall with volunteers Margaret and David Bean, Ringgold city directors, on a road trip to Catoosa, Walker, Dade, Chattooga and Whitfield counties. The subject of their conversations with pastors and church members was “Why” and “How” standing with Israel and the Jewish people is important.
At Dry Valley Baptist Church in Trion, Ga. a crowd of over 250 people, including 40 children, gathered, uniting three area churches. Pastor Jeff Duvall welcomed Pastor Brandon Bishop of Central Avenue Baptist Church of Trion, Pastor Joel Smith of Four Mile Baptist Church and members of their congregations. Tal Cohen, Israeli American from Chattanooga recounted his life in Israel, from having a gas mask and backpack in elementary school to his military service in intelligence.
At Battlefield Parkway Church of the Nazarene, Pastor Joe Brown shared how trips to Israel have changed his life. Michael Dzik, executive director of the Jewish Federation of Greater Chattanooga, introduced Amit Matityau, Israeli cultural emissary, who gave a personal story of his life in Sderot, known for receiving missile attacks from the Gaza Strip, to his three years in the Israeli Navy.
Other events included a Pastors’ Breakfast that was hosted by the Catoosa Chamber of Commerce and The Rosewood at Fort Oglethorpe. Almost 50 people attended an “Israel Advocacy Breakfast” hosted by Pastor Neal Grimes at Mt. Pisgah Baptist Church in Ringgold. Pastor Joel Smith, just returning from a pastors’ tour with Pastor Styrsky, had Pastor Styrsky speak at at Four Mile Baptist Church in Trion. Pastor Vincent Estill, Bible Way Baptist Church in Rossville, who toured Poland and Israel, had Pastor Styrsky speak at the church. In Trenton, Pastor Chad Cochran introduced Pastor Styrsky as speaker for the Wednesday night service at Porter Road Church of God.
"Pastor Styrsky clarified that the work CUFI does to support Israel and America in Congress is biblical, not political. CUFI is non-partisan and works with both Democratic and Republican leaders. He shared the growing rise of anti-Semitism throughout the world, with emphasis on Europe, Germany, France, Great Britain, Canada and the U.S. The most powerful thing Christians can do to support Israel is to join the 7.5 million members of CUFI," officials said.
Resources on CUFI and Israel are available to local churches and schools and include: CUFI representatives coming to churches for programs; annual CUFI Israel Trips for pastors; CUFI’s Annual Washington Summit; and information on anti-Semitism on college campuses.
For more information about the North Georgia CUFI Chapter and local Christians United for Israel activities contact Margaret Bean at 423-645-1552, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. To contact Amit Matityau, Israeli cultural emissary, for speaking engagements at churches and schools, call the Jewish Federation at 423-493-0270.