JPOST: Canadian Christian groups hold online event advocating for Israel

The Canada Celebrates Israel Network of Christians and Jews organized an online event in Canada advocating for the Jewish state, featuring participation by Canadian government officials, Israeli Knesset members and CEOs of the Canadian branches of Israel-affiliated organizations.

The event was originally scheduled to run as a series of rallies and awareness programs spanning across the country. However, due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic the event was relegated to an online format to adhere to health restrictions and social distancing orders.

The theme, “A light for the nations: together exposing darkness and standing for the truth," brought in hundreds of participant viewers to listen to presentations on subjects of Israeli advocacy and combating antisemitism. The online event was sponsored by Christian organizations such as the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem, Bridges for Peace and the Israel Allies Foundation (IAF).

"Creating direct lines of communication and cooperation between Knesset members and Christian members of Parliament, as well as grassroots Christian supporters of Israel, lies at the core of our mission," IAF President Josh Reinstein said. "Events like these, even if they must be virtual at this time, empower us to continue in our joint efforts to support Israel on the basis of our shared values."

"This event is an opportunity for Christian and Jewish Canadians to gather online to strengthen our bonds of friendship and cooperation by connecting with Israeli MKs from the Knesset Christian Allies Caucus," said national director of the Canada Celebrates Israel Network Reverend Giulio Lorefice Gabeli. "It is this strong connection which empowers us to jointly advocate for the Land and People of Israel and combat antisemitism."

The keynote speakers included Blue and White MK Michal Cotler-Wunsh, head the Knesset Aliyah and Integration Committee’s subcommittee on Israel-Diaspora relations, as well as Canadian MP James Benzen and Israeli MK Sharren Haskel. Cotler-Wunsh's father, Irwin Cotler, was just named Canada’s Special Envoy on Preserving Holocaust Remembrance and Combating Antisemitism in late November."

If COVID-19 has taught us anything, it is that there is far more that binds us together than that separates us," said Cotler-Wunsh. "When we stand together and engage with one another – the private and the public sector, across all cultures, languages and nations – there is nothing we cannot accomplish.

"The opportunity for global collaboration today meets us at a historic time, as the traditional paradigm of rejection of Israel is shifting towards normalization," she added. "As trustees of shared values, human rights and international law, it is our collective responsibility to be a beacon of human rights and expose the darkness of those who teach hate, support incitement, and enable a culture of terror, antisemitism and impunity."

Only in this way, will we be able to create sustainable long-lasting peace – not only for Canada and Israel, not only for Jews and Christians, but for the world at large.”

Haskel noted that "Israel is too often condemned in international forums with unsubstantiated claims. However, if you walk into any hospital, courthouse and even the Knesset, you will see how minorities are celebrated and protected here."

In this way, Israel is a model for other areas in the Middle East. As dedicated lovers of Israel and frequent visitors who have seen the truth first hand, your collective voice has a powerful role to play," she added. "We must therefore continue to build bridges between our communities and strengthen the bonds between Israel and its allies.”

Read original article here on the JPOST.