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Current Israel 05/09/21

Israeli Athletes at the Paralympics in Japan 

The Tokyo Paralympics opened last week with 4,403 athletes from 162 countries. Israel sent thirty-three athletes to compete in eleven different sports, including swimming, rowing, wheelchair tennis, goalball, badminton, and powerlifting. Israel won seven medals and broke a world record by the end of the first week. Mark Malyar, who has cerebral palsy, won a gold medal in swimming and set a world record in the 200-meter medley swim. 

Prime Minister Bennett, opposition leader Netanyahu, and President Herzog all called or tweeted their congratulations to these athletes for their tremendous efforts, training, and determination in the face of obstacles.   

Please pray for the health and well-being of these incredible athletes. 

 

Prime Minister Bennett Says All Goals Were Achieved in Washington 

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett was supposed to meet President Biden this past Thursday, but due to the bomb blast at the Kabul airport in Afghanistan, President Biden had to delay their meeting to Friday. Speaking to Israeli journalists following their summit, Prime Minister Bennett said that both he and President Biden are determined to prevent Iran from developing as a nuclear threat. The two also discussed issues regarding Hamas, and the American hold on visa provision for Israelis until summer 2022.   

Please pray for wisdom and understanding for these important world leaders as they govern their countries.  

 

Impromptu Sabbath in the United States 

As Prime Minister Bennett’s meeting with President Biden was delayed until Friday, he could not return to Israel before the Sabbath. Bennett is a modern orthodox Jewish man—the first Israeli Prime Minister to wear a yarmulke and avoid travel on the Sabbath. Thus, he and his whole delegation, waited until sundown on Saturday night to fly home from the United States. They also chose to voluntarily follow the strictest Covid-19 isolation protocols and did not leave their hotel. 

However, with some community support and strategic action, the delegation was able to procure challah (braided bread traditional for the Sabbath), a complete Kosher dinner and Sabbath wine. They also set up a synagogue in their hotel suite, complete with a Torah scroll and all staff, including the security detail and travelling journalist, enjoyed fellowship together.  

Please pray for this delegation and their counterparts in the United States to continue the work that is set before them, for the peace and well-being of both countries and the world.