Israel’s Messianic Jews meet together in Kehilas in Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Haifa, Tiberias, Beer Sheva and other parts of the country, this community is can be very different, in terms of some who grew in an environment closer to Christianity and some closer to Judaism. Some from a no faith system at all.
My main congregation was King of Kings in Jerusalem, which the Sunday 6pm service was in English, and they had a Friday service in Hebrew. Still – on Sunday, we sang praise and worship songs often in Hebrew, with both true Hebrew, transliterated Hebrew and English on the projector screen. If I went to Jerusalem Assembly at the other side of the city, there was a pastor preaching in Hebrew and someone else translating into English. At one point there was FIVE languages there, as you could borrow a radio headset and listen to the teaching in Spanish or Russian or others. This meant someone else sat down was translating, and you needed to turn the channel on the radio to the one you wanted.
If I went to at least three others, I think like Shemen Sasson, all English speakers were given a headset when you head into the door.
A congregation in Tiberias (that’s Israel’s largest city in the Galilee) had a community of mostly Russian people so the words to the songs were in English, Hebrew and Russian. It was there I noticed that the Russian symbols for ‘Sh’ sound looks like the Hebrew Shin ‘ש‘ which I find intriguing.
Somewhere in Beer Sheva (a city I’ve not properly visited yet) was a congregation for Spanish speakers. This was a long drive but worth it for Spanish Christian volunteers who headed there every weekend. Only a few congregations are Hebrew only, such as Tiferet Yeshua in Tel Aviv.
I like all the congregations I’ve been to as they are also centred on Yeshua (Jesus) and involve all Jewish holidays, some are more stronger Jewish familiarity than others.
The Arab congregation I went to in Nazareth was quite similar, with Arabic for the locals, but English speakers were welcomed with the same radio units.
1. Buildings 2. Christian or Jewish? – 3. Meeting place names – 4. Languages – more soon…..