Karmiel’s deputy mayor recently confirmed what Yad L’Achim has being warning about for years: the missionaries have targeted new immigrants, especially those who are struggling economically and socially.
“Some of these immigrants are ensnared by the ‘Messianic Jews,’ whose organizations are providing them with assistance,” said Mrs. Rina Greenberg. “Some of the services that we, the state, used to provide immigrants, are now being provided by these organizations.”
Mrs. Greenberg added that “in Karmiel alone there are at least 500 families being cared for by missionary organizations.”
Karmiel, established in the Galilee in 1964, off the road between Acre and Tzefas, has a population of close to 50,000, including a large number of immigrants.
Yad Lachim founding chairman Harav Sholom Dov Lipschitz said the remarks of Karmiel’s deputy mayor were most disturbing. “This is a serious indictment that isn’t coming from Yad L’Achim, but from a professional source who comes into daily contact with immigrants and who certainly cannot be accused of having anything against missionaries.”
Added Harav Lipschitz, “It’s not bad enough that the government brings masses of non-Jews to Israel. Now it is failing to provide services to the Jewish immigrants who do arrive, and allowing the missionaries to fill in the vacuum, as the deputy mayor is herself acknowledging. The result of all this is that Israel will turn into a center of assimilation.”
Following Mrs. Greenberg’s remarks, Harav Lipschitz sent urgent letters to the prime minister, the absorption minister and the social affairs minister demanding that they renew absorption services in order to block the spread of missionaries among Jewish immigrants.