The Knesset Christian Allies Caucus (KCAC) and the World Jewish Congress held its 11th Annual dinner at Jerusalem’s Waldorf Astoria last month to recognize and honor Christians who have shown their commitment to Israel and the Jewish people.
Robert Mawire received the Lifetime Achievement Award for decades of generous support of the Jewish state. Cary Summers received the “Night to Honor our Christian Allies Tourism Award” for his program Passages, which provides subsidized trips to Israel for the next generation of Christian leaders.
Mawire has been instrumental in encouraging and building support for Israel among Christians all over the world. In a recent interview with the Jerusalem Post, Mawire said: “The Jewish return to Israel is undeniable evidence that the Bible is true.”
“How could you love Jewish ancestors and not their descendants?” Mawire added.
Summers, who also serves as president of the Museum of the Bible in Washington D.C., has visited Israel more than 100 times.
“This is a truly moving moment to be honored by a state and a people which I love so dearly,” Summers said. “I hope that programs such as Passages will continue to build deep and long-lasting connections between the State of Israel and the next generation of American Christians.”
KCAC works to develop communication and cooperation between the Knesset and International Christian leaders and aims to highlight the support provided to Israel and the Jewish people by Christians around the world.
“Christians have been our most tried and faithful friends over the last few decades,” Josh Reinstein, the Orthodox Jewish director of KCAC, told journalist Paul Calvert. “It is Christians who stand with Israel, not countries, today. This is because they put values and beliefs ahead of economic and political support.”
“The Knesset has opened its eyes and realized that these [Christians] are our best friends and we need to say ‘thank you’ for the work that they do,” he said.
In a separate interview, Shai Hermesh of the World Jewish Congress said he is happy that Jews and Christians have found a “common language.”
“I am so happy that we can talk together, share our thoughts, beliefs and values, and support each other. After these years of doing these events together we are not only friends and colleagues but also feeling like we are part of a family,” he told Calvert.
Both Reinstein and Hermesh, keenly aware of the persecution being suffered by Christians in the Middle East and elsewhere in the world, also spoke of the need for Jews to stand with Christians now.
“Even today it is more important for Jews to stand with Christians than for Christians to stand with Jews,” Reinstein said. “Unfortunately Christians are involved in a genocide right here in the Middle East and Africa, and no one is saying a word. It’s not enough for Christians to say ‘never again’ for the Jews: We also have to stand up for our Christian allies. It think we do a lot to that effect and we hope that more Christians would get involved.”
Hermesh echoed these sentiment.
“It is time for the Jews to support the Christians too,” he said. “Around the world Christians need a lot of support – and Jews and Israel should do almost everything in order to support them.”
Minister of Tourism Akiva Govrin and Minister for Social Equality Gila Gamliel both attended the dinner as well as International Christian Embassy Jerusalem Executive Director Jurgen Buhler and Bridges for Peace Director Rebecca Brimmer.