“Now the Passover, the feast of the Jews, was near.” Jn. 6.4
PASSOVER 2019 WILL BEGIN THIS WEEK: PLEASE HELP VISION FOR ISRAEL TO MAKE IT A JOYFUL CELEBRATION FOR THOSE IN NEED: Passover, a seven-day commemoration of the Jewish Exodus from Egypt, begins this year in Israel at sunset Friday, 19 April, and ends at nightfall on, Friday 26 April. Families and friends across the country will gather in homes, halls, and hotels to celebrate the annual Seder meal. Together the nation will recall in song and story the biblical deliverance, under the leadership of Moses, from the slave pits of Egypt, the ten plagues preceding it, and escapes from death because of the blood of the Passover lamb. Unleavened bread called matzos will be eaten throughout the holiday, and sweets made with matzo, corn and potato flour will accompany daily meals.
Sadly, there are many families in Israel whose financial situation prevents them from purchasing the necessary food supplies for the Seder meal and the seven days of the holiday. Every year, thanks to the generous donations of our supporters, Vision for Israel is able to help hundreds of families by providing gift cards for purchasing holiday food, so they can celebrate with dignity. This year, our team has given gift cards to terror victims, Holocaust survivors, and needy families in our communities. We hope with the help of our partners to reach 1,000 families, with a gift of approximately $150 per family. Please help us to attain this goal. Your donations are vital and appreciated at www.visionforisrael.com For residents in the UK and outside N. America visit our website at www.josephstorehouse.co.uk
ISRAELI SPACECRAFT STILL MADE IT TO THE MOON: An Israeli spacecraft lost contact with Earth and crashed just moments before it was to land on the moon late Thur.11 April 2019 failing an attempt to make history as the first privately funded lunar mission. The spacecraft lost communication with ground control as it was making its final descent to the moon. Moments later, the mission was declared a failure. "We definitely crashed on the surface of the moon," said Opher Doron, general manager of the space division of Israel Aerospace Industries. He said the spacecraft was in pieces scattered at the planned landing site. Doron said that the spacecraft's engine turned off shortly before landing. By the time power was restored, he said the craft was moving too fast to land safely. The mishap occurred in front of a packed audience that included PM Netanyahu and was broadcast live on national television. The small robotic spacecraft, built by the non-profit SpaceIL and state-owned Israel Aerospace Industries, had hoped to match a feat that has only been achieved by the national space agencies of three countries: USA, Russia, and China."If at first, you don't succeed, try try again," Netanyahu said. He vowed to put an Israeli spacecraft on the moon "intact" in the next two years. (Fox)
DESPITE FAILURE TO LAND SPACEIL’S PRESIDENT: ‘BERESHEET WAS SUCCESS, ISRAELI FLAG ON MOON’: The message for those watching is we tried and didn't complete. I think that Israel has to continue and I'm sure we will,' Khan says. News sources spoke to Morris Khan, president of SpaceIL, on Friday, 12 April 2019 who remains upbeat and optimistic despite Beresheet's failure to land safely on the moon the previous night. As millions of people watched in anticipation for Israel's spacecraft to make lunar history, SpaceIL lost communication with Beresheet minutes before Israel was set to become the fourth country to land on the moon after a successful seven-week journey in space. "I'm happy," the 89-year old South African-born entrepreneur said. "The flag of Israel is on the moon. The slogan of "Small country, big dreams" and Am YisraelChai (the nation of Israel lives) is on the moon. I think we've done something. We got around the moon, we landed on the moon. It just happened to be a hard landing." This is Beresheet (Hebrew for Genesis), and Beresheet was only the beginning. We're only at the beginning," Khan stressed."We did a very professional job. We were in space for two months. Beresheet behaved beautifully," Khan enthused. "The message for those watching is we tried and didn't complete. It doesn't mean that we stopped. I think that Israel has to continue and I'm sure they will continue. We learned a lot and we proved a lot. We showed that we could get to the moon. There was just a slight technical glitch at the very end at the landing. I don't regard this as a failure. I regard it as a success. "I'm happy tonight," Khan emphasized. "I feel the investment I made was worthwhile." (Arutz-7)
MIKE DEWINE, OHIO GOV. SIGNS ‘HEARTBEAT’ ABORTION BAN INTO LAW: A bill imposing one of the most stringent abortion restrictions in the nation was signed into law in Ohio. Republican Gov. Mike DeWine signed the heartbeat bill Thur. 11 April 2019, breaking with his predecessor, Republican JohnKasich, who had vetoed the measure twice. DeWine’s action came a day after the latest version of the bill, which outlaws abortions once a fetal heartbeat is detected, cleared the Republican-controlled Legislature. Doctors say a fetal heartbeat can be detected using transvaginal ultrasound technology as early as five weeks into pregnancy before many women know they are pregnant. Even before the bill was signed, the ACLU of Ohio said it was preparing a constitutional challenge to the law on behalf of Pre-Term Cleveland and three other Ohio abortion clinics. The legal challenge is what the bill’s backers have always wanted. They hope to provoke a legal challenge with the potential to overturn the USA Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling that legalized abortion up until viability, usually at 22 to 24 weeks. “The heartbeat bill is the next incremental step in our strategy to overturn Roe v. Wade,” said Ohio Right to Life President Mike Gonidakis. “While other states embrace radical legislation to legalize abortion on demand through the ninth month of pregnancy, Ohio has drawn a line and continues to advance protections for unborn babies.” (Wash. Times) “I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvelous are Your works, and that my soul knows very well.” 139:14
ANTI-ABORTION BILLS APPEAR IN 11 STATE LEGISLATURES AFTER RECENT NEW YORK DECISION TO DECRIMINALIZE ABORTION: Lawmakers in Georgia, Florida, Kentucky, Missouri, Mississippi, Arkansas, Minnesota, and Tennessee have all introduced “heartbeat bills” that ban abortions after 6 weeks or after a heartbeat is detected in a fetus, while in Alabama, North Carolina, and Texas, harsher criminal penalties have been proposed for doctors who perform abortions or else fail to provide emergency medical care to babies born in spite of botched abortion attempts. Terri Collins, the Alabama representative whose bill last week compared the “50 million babies that have been aborted since the Roe decision” to “German death camps, Chinese purges, Stalin’s gulags, Cambodian killing fields, and the Rwandan genocide” in terms of death toll, expressed hope that the slew of recent “heartbeat” bills might propel a case to the federal level like Roe and redefine the constitutionality of abortion. “Hopefully it completely takes it all the way to the Supreme Court, eventually to overturn Roe V. Wade,” she said. While the current set of proposed bills seem to have been stalled in Mississippi and Kentucky, Georgia governor Brian Kemp plans to sign a “heartbeat bill” by 12 May 2019 and advocates, while Ohio governor Mike DeWine has already followed through with promises he made in Jan. 2019 to “absolutely” sign any similar bill that crosses his path. De Wine signed the “heartbeat bill” on Thur. 11 April 2019. (Worthy News) Pray that all of these USA states and many more will take strong stands against abortion. Intercede also that greater education about abortion; such as methods used causing torturous deaths to fetuses, and the devastating consequences to the mothers, will be given in schools and health institutions. Intercede that laws will be changed leading to the end of government funding and establishment of stiff penalties for pro-abortion organizations and clinics.
TRUMP ADMIN REVOKES VISA OF BOYCOTT, DIVEST AND SANCTION ISRAEL CO-FOUNDER OMAR BARGHOUTI: The Trump administration pulled a USA visa from Boycott, Divest and Sanction Israel (BDS) Co-Founder Omar Barghouti, according to the American Arab Institute. The BDS organization seeks to create economic damage in the state of Israel by boycotting goods and services from areas they claim are being “occupied” by the Israeli government. Barghouti had been scheduled to appear Thur. morning 11 April, 2019 at the Arab American Institute in Washington, D.C., with anti-Israel journalist PeterBeinart, before having his visa revoked. Barghouti helped found the BDS movement in the early 2000s and has a history of making incendiary and anti-Semitic comments. The BDS co-founder, who was educated at Tel Aviv University, has called for Jewish people to be relegated to a minority in Israel, promoted anti-Semitic conspiracy theories and expressed sympathy for terrorist organizations. Last month, the Israel Ministry of Strategic affairs released a report highlighting the connections between the BDS movement and terrorist organizations. The BDS movement describes itself as a “Palestinian-led movement for freedom, justice, and equality.” (Daily Caller)
PENCE TO NETANYAHU: I APPRECIATE YOUR LEADERSHIP: Vice President Mike Pence last week called PMNetanyahu to congratulate him on his election victory. The USA Vice President told the Prime Minister that he appreciates his leadership and joint work with USA President Trump to advance the strong alliance between Washington and Israel. Netanyahu thanked Pence for his regards and for his friendship for the State of Israel over the years. Pence tweeted about his conversation with Netanyahu, writing, “Spoke to Prime Minister Netanyahu and offered my congratulations on his historic victory! The bonds between America & Israel have never been stronger. America stands with Israel!” On Wed. 10 April 2019, Trump calledNetanyahu from Air Force One to congratulate him on his election victory. The President warmly congratulated the Prime Minister and the people of Israel. Netanyahu thanked Trump for his great support of Israel, including the recognition of Jerusalem and the Golan Heights, as well as for the strong stand against the Iranian regime, including the President's recent decision against the Iranian Revolutionary Guards. The two leaders again expressed their appreciation for the abiding friendship between them and their countries. They agreed to continue closely working together in the coming years for both Israel and the United States. (Arutz-7)
ISRAELI MILLENNIALS HELPED RE-ELECT NETANYAHU: Israel's young people supported Netanyahu's Likud and smaller parties that help him form governing majorities. Born close to or after the 1993 Oslo peace accords between Israelis and Palestinians, and coming of age during a wave of violence known as the second Palestinian intifada, Israel's millennials take a harder line on security and peace than older generations. Netanyahu's pollster, John McLaughlin, said, "They like his policies on security and the economy." (Wall St. Journal)
RECORD TOURISM CONTINUES IN FIRST QUARTER OF 2019: After making seasonal adjustments, the Central Bureau of Statistics, reports that there was an average of 391,000 visitors to Israel each month, in the first quarter of 2019, which equals a record of 4.7 million tourists per year, compared with a monthly average of 374,000 per month in the final quarter 2018, which represented an annual rate of 4.5 million tourists. In 2018, a record 4.12 million tourists came to Israel, up 14% from 2017, which was also a record. (Globes) “Your gates will always stand open, they will never be shut, day or night, so that people may bring you the wealth of the nations-- their kings led in triumphal procession.” Isa. 60:11
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Barry Segal with the Editorial Staff