On Wednesday morning, 17 November a few olim (immigrants) left Kiev airport and went to Israel permanently. We picked up families in Chmilnitsky, Vinnitsa the day before for an overnight stay in our shelter in Kiev.
One of the olim, Iryna, had a particularly hard time saying goodbye to her brother, his wife and other family members. Iryna is a retired English teacher and was delighted to speak English with me. She spoke fluently (no surprise since she was a teacher) and as usual we asked why she decided to go to Israel.
It was a long story but we had enough time during the six-hour drive to Kiev. Nine years ago, their only daughter had left for Israel, something Iryna objected to strongly. Their daughter was a clever woman and had a flourishing career as a lawyer and Iryna saw no point in leaving everything behind to start again from scratch in a foreign country. Her husband, on the contrary, said ‘dear daughter, follow the call of your heart and you have my blessing to go’.
‘Iryna you must promise me one thing. When I am gone do not stay in Ukraine but go to Israel, your country where our only daughter lives!’
Iryna did not agree with this and it brought tension and stress to their marriage. About a year ago, Iryna’s husband became seriously ill and just before he passed away, he said to his wife: ‘Iryna you must promise me one thing. When I am gone do not stay in Ukraine but go to Israel, your country where our only daughter lives!’ With tearful eyes Iryna nodded yes, this I promise you! And now this promise was fulfilled on Wednesday morning, 17 November.
Iryna’s daughter has married a Jewish man from Iran whose grandparents were expelled from Iran. The family is blessed with two sons now 3 years and 9 months old and live in Kiryat Ono, a small town founded in 1939 where there was once a reception camp for Jews fleeing from the surrounding Arab countries. Now it is part of greater Tel Aviv.
Iryna and the other olim (above) were very glad that they did not have to travel all night but that they could spend the night in the shelter. At the airport, they thanked us all for the safe journey and our good care. It will be such a special reunion for Iryna and her daughter, son-in-law and her two small grandchildren.
Next week there are flights scheduled for olim from three different airports. From Kiev the capital, Odessa in the south and Dnepr in the east of Ukraine.
Help the Jews Come Home!
Please support our campaign ‘Bring the Jews Home’.
It’s only through our generous supporters who give to causes like Aliyah and First Home in the Homeland, olim can find safety and security within their true homeland. If you’d like to participate in what God is doing around the world—bringing comfort to His people and returning them safely to the Holy Land—please prayerfully consider giving today!
It costs $350 to assist one Ukrainian Jew, $1250 to assist 5 or $6250 to assist 25 to make aliyah. Any amount is of course welcome! See the back page or donate online at: myaccount.c4israel.com.au
Every week Jewish families make aliyah to Israel. Watch this recent video to see their arrival at Kiev airport: