Posts By: shevet

Access Denied

Should the “Shevet Achim” principle from Psalm 133 (brothers living together in unity) be extended beyond medical care? Our work started in 1994 when we first came face to face with the reality that many of our neighbors’ children couldn’t get into the hospitals in Israel for essential, lifesaving treatment. Did you know that a… Read more »

Christian Hate for Muslims

The most popular page on the orthodox Jewish aish.com website today is a video of the “Son of Hamas” speaking in Germany, followed closely by an article titled “Why Jews Don’t Believe in Jesus.” It is undeniably riveting to hear Mosab Hassan, son of a founder of the Hamas movement, proclaim that he loves Israel…. Read more »

The Power of No Partiality

It’s a revelation for every poor, marginalized, outcast or forgotten family that crosses the borders of Israel with us seeking heart surgery for their child. “They treated our child just like an Israeli child–no difference!” These families have never before been valued simply for being human, made in the image of God. It’s always been… Read more »

When Truth Becomes Clear

The use of battlefield weapons against a trapped civilian population. That was the charge made against Israel during the fighting in the Gaza Strip three years ago, and it deeply hurt and humiliated and angered Muslims everywhere. Now to their horror they’re seeing it happen before their eyes in the Syrian city of Homs, and… Read more »

Liars Who ‘Love God’

Several years ago the Muslim Scholars Association in Iraq learned that children from their country were coming to Israel for life-saving heart surgeries. Outraged, the religious leaders went to the Iraqi parliament and demanded an end to this travesty. In the following flurry of publicity, some of our partners were indeed frightened away from helping… Read more »

Who Deserves to be Saved?

A year ago a lieutenant colonel in the IDF was praised in the media, after he and his men in the Jordan Valley brigade helped a Palestinian mother give birth, resuscitated the baby boy, and then evacuated both mother and child by helicopter to Hadassah Hospital in Jerusalem. It was a beautiful demonstration of the… Read more »

Rome or Jerusalem?

This week Michelle, our son Zak and I went for our first visit to Italy, to mark our upcoming thirtieth marriage anniversary. The impetus for the visit came from Michelle, whose family roots are all in Italy. But I was surprised by the impact that seeing Rome had on me as well. We saw countless… Read more »

He Who Sits in the Heavens Shall Laugh

The once-unimaginable happened today, as the Egyptian election commission announced that Muslim Brotherhood candidate Mohammed Morsi will be the next president (with as yet undefined powers). Serious enemies of the Jewish state–linked to the murder of Anwar Sadat for making peace with Israel–are now closer to taking control of one-fourth of the population of the… Read more »

Clashing Civilizations in the Amman Morgue

Death is the great equalizer, and I certainly saw a cross-section of the people of Jordan as I sat waiting in the Amman morgue for a few hours on Shabbat morning. A Palestinian-Jordanian sheikh with a silver beard and a white robe, when he learned we were helping children go to Israel for heart surgeries,… Read more »

Common Ground in a Jerusalem Emergency Room

We had an unexpected visit to the emergency room of Hadassah Hospital on Mount Scopus Thursday night, after our Palestinian coworker Yousef was startled by unfamiliar chest pain. As we entered the security door a slapping, pushing, shouting brawl broke out when a young Arab man wanting to see his sick friend tried to push… Read more »

How Our Muslim Neighbors See the Conflict in Gaza

While some in the West are emphasizing Israel’s right to defend itself from rocket fire from Gaza, our neighbors here in the Middle East seem united this week in condemning Israel’s response, using words such as massacre and criminal. How can people see the same events so differently? Three times this week I’ve seen the… Read more »

The Root of Our Region’s Conflict

Our community will not accept as members any who champion Jews over and against Muslims, or Muslims over and against Jews. Holding such an attitude calls into question whether we have yet understood the grace of God, which bought as at such a dear price that we no longer have the right to withhold grace from our… Read more »

Look What’s in the Mailbox

Our community sat in amazement last month during a morning meeting at Prophets Street, as coworker Larry Krieg read from correspondence he and his mother received when he was a nine-year-old boy from C.S. Lewis, who was then at the height of his fame. Though crippled with arthritis, Lewis wrote page after page of thoughtful,… Read more »

An Outing to the Garden Tomb

Today the families journeyed down the road to visit the Garden Tomb. For some families it was a new experience, while for others it was the second time they went to the beautiful garden. After everyone was shuttled from Shevet Achim to the tomb, we joined together to listen to a description of the thousands… Read more »

A Visit with the Howanstines

So much of what we do at here Shevet Achim could not be done without the support of our amazing brothers and sisters around the world. Therefore, we consider it a great privilege when we have the opportunity to meet those of you who partner with us and share with you a bit of our… Read more »

You Bring Restoration

This past weekend, Shevet Achim staff were presented with a beautiful gift…the gift of restoration. On Thursday afternoon, we packed up and headed north to the shores of Galilee for a community-wide retreat, hosted by a lovely Welsh couple named Erik and Mary Fok. Their ministry Breakfast on the Beach seeks to provide an environment… Read more »

A Tired Love

Tomorrow is the 10th anniversary of the attack on the World Trade Center. I’m spending it in the Middle East. And as the day approaches I am mentally and emotionally bombarded with living examples of love and hatred. The church service we may decide to attend regularly meets on Saturday morning–the Shabbat. There are many… Read more »

Love Rather Than Stereotypes

This big man I saw at the Wolfson Hospital today is Ayman Al Kurdi. He is a Kurdish gentleman from Iraq living in Gaza for five generations now. He has seven children, the youngest is in second grade and the oldest two are married. His first grandchild is a little boy who looks just like… Read more »

Wandering (Voluntarily) in the Wilderness

This is a photo essay of a weekend that five Shevet volunteers spent together this December in the desert – Micha, Caroline, Kristina, Stephanie, and myself, Ryan. We were in Makhtesh Ramon in the arid south of the country, and had three brilliant days. We’ll let the pictures do the talking. P.S. Your aesthetic experience… Read more »

A God Who Loves Life

Last Sunday, six Shevet volunteers joined four of our Kurdish families on an expedition to the Jerusalem Biblical Zoo! None of the children or their mothers had ever enjoyed such an experience before. So, it was a delight to view God’s creatures in the company of their fresh curiosity and wonder. The afternoon sun had… Read more »

A Gift from God

The month of June brought with it warm summer days, and a special addition to our community from the shores of Stolkholm, Sweden. Tara Azizi (second from right below) became the very first Kurdish volunteer to serve with us in Jerusalem. Having heard of Shevet in Sweden last year, Tara later shared that she felt… Read more »

A Gift for All Mankind

 A view of Bethlehem and Shepherd’s Field in Beit Sahour With Christmas quickly approaching, my child-like sense of wonder returns like a dear old friend. I love this season and everything in it that points toward the mystery of Emmanuel, God with us. I remember playing the part of an angel in my church’s Christmas… Read more »

Arms of Love for Donna

I met Donna Petrel ten years ago while on a trip to the US to speak about helping Gaza children with heart surgeries. When I flew back to Israel a week later, I was detained at the airport by the Interior Ministry, a victim of the policy to limit visiting non-Jews to a maximum stay… Read more »

An Evening to Remember With Our Partners

Since Shevet Achim first began in 1994, we have had the privilege of working alongside some amazing health professionals from Wolfson Medical Center. Many of these physicians and nurses have been serving faithfully for years, devoting countless hours to provide hope for children with broken hearts from around the world. But it’s not just time… Read more »

From and For a Heart

Rachel Klas, Kirkland Washington, December 26, 2011 I have a job that tends to leave me a bit… tense. So, when I stumbled upon a local arts center, I signed up for Clay 101, joking with myself that the fee was cheaper than therapy. I kept my job, so I kept taking classes, and I found… Read more »

A Heart Like Shiloh’s

Ryan Gregg, February 23, 2012 Meet Shiloh, a six-year old local leader from rural Manitoba. She is not your run-of-the-mill cutie. Behind these sparkling blue eyes is a heart that cares for the hearts of others. For Shiloh’s sixth birthday, she asked her friends to give her things that she could give to the children… Read more »

Treats for Heart Treatment

Candace Wisely, March 11, 2012 Each Friday in the month of February, six sophomore ladies at Southwest Christian High School in Chanhassen, Minnesota treated their classmates to homemade snacks and baked goods. Together they are in a discipleship group, and decided to raise money for life-saving heart surgeries in the Middle East. The girls learned… Read more »

Climbing The Highest Peak In Wales

Clive Owen, September 16, 2012 Tony pointing to the summit of Snowdon Our sponsored “walk” up Snowdon (the highest mountain in Wales and second highest in the UK) last Wednesday, September 6th was completed successfully. It was a hard climb but my friend Tony Hathaway and I made it to the top. Our aim as… Read more »

Images of Hope

Caroline Cox, October 22, 2012 St. George’s Church in Barcelona has supported the work of Shevet Achim for a number of years. Recently Sally Morton, coordinator of Shevet Achim UK, spoke in a church service here and shared the Shevet Achim calendars. The photos in the calendar beautifully captured the way heart surgeries in Israel bring restoration… Read more »

Doing My Part

Jessica Thurley, October 28, 2012 My name is Jessica and I’m fourteen years old. I first saw the work of Shevet Achim in action when we visited the Wolfson Medical Centre in Tel Aviv, Israel when I was just five (above picture). On that occasion I filled a suitcase with soft toys to give to the… Read more »

On Stand for Children’s Heart Surgeries

Jessica Thurley, March 21, 2013 Recently I was at an ICEJ conference in Billinge (Wigan), where I had a stand for Shevet Achim to raise funds and awareness! I was selling hand-made crafts and sets of cards on which were printed photos of flowers, boats, and wildlife I had photographed in Israel. I was amazed… Read more »

Dolls for Kids

The effort to save the lives of children through Shevet Achim is truly international. It begins with an Arab partner physician in either Gaza Strip or Iraq, who gives a diagnosis of the child’s heart defect. The next phase is transport to an Israeli hospital, overseen by Shevet Achim’s international staff. At the hospital it… Read more »

Kids Pulling for Kids

It’s not just adults pulling for the kids at Shevet Achim to make it through open heart surgery – other kids are pulling too. Third and fourth grade students at Abundant Life Christian Fellowship in Mountain View, California pray on a regular basis for the children at Shevet – some of whom are also in… Read more »

En Gedi Adventure

On Friday, the sixteenth of August, thirteen members of our Shevet community set out to traverse the desert oasis of En Gedi. Jerusalem’s bustling city streets faded in the distance, while a vast lunar landscape stretched out before us. The highway wound southward like a black ribbon, skirting the Dead Sea’s iridescent shores, then inland… Read more »

Shevet at the Summit

THE SUMMIT IS REACHED!!! Despite the steady rain and the swirling mist that accompanied them all the way to the top, a very delighted and relieved team of seven celebrated accomplishing their mission of reaching the top of Ben Nevis… …and then immediately tucking into a very welcome snack lunch of soggy sandwiches, fruit and… Read more »

Tel Aviv Night Run

  Three Shevet community members set out from Jerusalem to run in the Tel Aviv Night Run: Marisa, Sonia, and I. Along to cheer us on were Ruth, Sophie, Sarah, Kristina and Rahel. The goal: for each of us to sponsor the outstanding surgical expenses for one child. We let family and friends know of… Read more »

Love Which Flows From Truth

“In Him we live, and move, and have our being” (Acts 17:28). Just the other day, I was sharing with a couple of visitors about the various aspects of life and service at Shevet Achim. It’s true that we seek ways to love our neighbours and anyone who passes through our door. This outward demonstration of… Read more »

More Than We Ask or Imagine

This week our Shevet community was enriched by the visit of Giovanni and Simone, father and son from Italy. Giovanni came for a medical consultation at a private clinic in Tel Aviv. For most of us our communication was limited due to language barriers. However, it didn’t take much time to feel that we had… Read more »

Visit to the Jerusalem Zoo

“So God created the great creatures of the sea and every living thing with which the water teems and that moves about in it… And God said, “Let the land produce living creatures according to their kinds…” (Genesis 1:21). Last Thursday we saw all types of God’s creatures in Jerusalem’s zoo: big and small, colorful… Read more »

The King’s City in White

Waking up Thursday morning was a thrill, as snowfall had already begun its descent upon Jerusalem. What started as a gentle snowfall steadily picked up momentum and turned into a full-on snowstorm, transforming Prophets Street into a frozen parking lot: Local newspapers called it the “worst snow storm in Jerusalem in decades,” with most estimates… Read more »

Treasures in Earthen Vessels

When a new child comes through our door for the first time, I often wonder what kind of an impact our community will have on his or her life. More times than not, however, it is the children themselves who make the greatest impact on our lives. Through them, I have learned what it looks… Read more »