Inspiration


A song of ascents. Of David.
Behold, how good and how pleasant
For brothers to dwell together in unity.
Like the precious oil upon the head,
Running down on the beard, the beard of Aaron,
Running down on the edge of his garments.
Like the dews of Hermon,
Running down the mountains of Zion.
For there the Lord commanded the blessing
Life forevermore.

Psalm 133

 
Shevet Achim began in 1994 with the purpose of helping neighboring children receive lifesaving heart surgeries in Israel. The name Shevet Achim comes from the Hebrew of Psalm 133, "Behold how good and how pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together in unity...For there the LORD commanded the blessing, even life forevermore." We believe this promise to hold true for the troubled relationship between the children of Abraham in the Middle East.
 
Fundamentally, Shevet Achim is an expression of God's grace. What we have to communicate is not the work we do but the animating spirit behind and through it: we are people in need of grace interacting with people in need of grace. 
 
This idea in no way belongs to us, and in no way do we keep it in perfection. Grace, beautiful to the soul and efficacious in reality, has a tendency to become old and encrusted. Therefore, at the heart of the interaction in Jerusalem between Muslims, Jews, and Christians, our desire is not to enlist people in our brand of religion but to experience a breakthrough of this truth ourselves. Only then does it become contagious. Grace received becomes grace given. Love received becomes love given. Old cycles are broken, and kingdom comes. This is the great hope for us, as individual people and as a community: that our posture will become this divine, viral essence.
 
Our activity consists of locating children with heart defects in cooperation with partner physicians, transporting them to Israel, sharing hospitality with them and their parents while in the country, and building partnerships to fund their surgeries.