The Passing of a Pioneer of the Messianic Community in Israel: Victor Smadja

Victor was one of the pioneers and leading Messianic believers in Israel over the years when the number of Messianic Jews in Israel was estimated at only a few dozen. He was challenged by others about his faith but eternal devotion bore abundant fruit to God’s glory.

Victor was a visionary who acted for the future and who fought for independence, strength and purity of the Messianic community in Israel.

For many years, he led the young peoples’ conferences that become a vital part and impact to many lives. He also oversaw for many years the youth and children’s camps, led by The Messianic Assembly in Jerusalem, which continues to this day. He initiated the establishment of the first Messianic publishing company in the country, Dolphin Publishing, and then afterwards, Yanetz Publishing and Keren Ahvah Meshihit. Through the two latter companies Victor published hundreds of thousands of literature and Bibles in Hebrew and Russian, distributing them for free all over Israel in efforts to spread the Good News. When efforts were made to bring together the believers in Jerusalem in the 1960s, Victor was one of the leaders in this effort that eventually led to the establishment of a Messianic congregation in the city. There he served alongside other pastors. After the passing of the other founding elders/pastors, Victor remained as the Senior Pastor of the congregation. For years, he also was responsible for the operations of Beit Yedidiya in Haifa when it was used as a center for Messianic conferences.

Hundreds of people, including us, owe him a big debt. We thank God for Victor and his long-standing service. “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his faithful servants“. Victor was most certainly a faithful servant of the Lord and will now get his reward. For our part, we will not forget his dedication, his contribution to us and to our children, and his life’s work.

Bracha and I pray for the Lord’s comfort to all his loved ones, especially to his family and first and foremost to his dear wife, Suzy, who humbly stood next to him all these years. We do not mourn as those who have no hope, but we do mourn, and praise and thank God for the great and lasting legacy of our brother.

Note: The original article was written in Hebrew and translated to English by the Kehila News Israel Staff.