Israel’s Delegation to Messiah Conference 2016 in the US

The Israeli delegation at Messiah Conference 2016

In recent years, every summer, a group of young Believers coming from congregations all over Israel attend Messiah Conference in Pennsylvania, USA. The group is organized and put together by Maoz Israel. This year, a group of about 30 young people from many diverse congregations in Israel went and participated. Messiah Conference is the largest annual convention of the Messianic Jewish Alliance of America (MJAA). This association is the largest body of Messianic believers made up of Jews and Gentiles who believe in Yeshua as the Messiah and the Restoration of the people of Israel in the Land of Israel.

The conference takes place over seven days from morning to evening at Messiah College in Pennsylvania. During the day there are many different activities and classes on various subjects, concerts, activities for children and youth, discussion panels, services and more. One evening of the conference is a dedicated “Israel Night”, which places a special emphasis on the State of Israel and the Israeli delegation. The Praise and Worship that evening is typically led by a worship team from Israel, and this year it was the band Miqedem who led worship that night and were also able to present their debut CD at the conference. The Israeli group takes an active role in the conference and participates in the discussion panels, meetings with youth, and performing original music from Israel and more.

One of the panels is a Q&A session, where all those who are interested can come and ask members of the Israeli group questions. Most of the questions are focused on military service for believers, Israeli politics, Aliyah and Israeli openness to the gospel. One member of the delegation was an Arab Believer from a congregation in northern Israel. He also shared with the participants in the audience about his army service as an Arab-Israeli in the Israeli army. It greatly moved those present on the panel.

Many of the believers who spoke with members of the Israeli delegation at the conference, told them how excited they were to meet Israelis who believe in Yeshua and how they pray regularly for the believers in Israel. In fact, for them to actually meet this delegation of believers from Israel is to see with their own eyes how their prayers are being answered.

For many of the members of the delegation, it was their first time visiting the United States in general, and in particular the conference, and this was their first exposure to the Messianic Jewish culture of North America.

For Natalia, it was very interesting to see the differences between American Messianics and Israeli Messianics. In the US, it is more common to follow certain Jewish traditions, such as wearing a yarmulke, wearing a tallit, holding a traditional Shabbat ceremony in the synagogue, and more. Natalia shares, “I really enjoyed the conference and God also spoke to me personally in various areas of my life… I was blessed to also have had some quiet time with God on the beautiful campus.”

Yigal was delighted and encouraged to find a large community of Jewish Americans and Canadians who believe in Yeshua and it felt like a big family in Messiah from different locations around the world. He shares, “Believers who are connected to their Jewish side as well as their Messianic side is a phenomenon I have not seen from believers from any other country. I was personally encouraged to see it.”

Many members of the delegation were moved to experience the love so many conference participants lavished on them. “I was very happy to see their love for us, and the connection with us, it’s really moving!”, Rita said.

For Alona it was a blessed experience in every way, although she initially debated whether to attend or not. She shares, “I was blessed with really every message, every meeting and the joint worship and communal prayers. I really thank God for what He has done in my life on this trip and I strongly encourage Believers to go to the conference and expect that God will do great things in your life.”