'And His banner over me is love'

It was Rosh Hashana, the Jewish New Year, and Karen and Amanda were in Ceasarea with the Board of Directors and Staff of Helping Hand Coalition. A long banquet table was laid for a feast, every attention to detail had been made. The golden table decorations sparkled in the candle light. The food already placed on the table had been beautifully arranged. Everything looked inviting and exquisite.

It is this attention to detail and care to transform the mundane into something beautiful, that characterizes the work of Helping Hand Coalition (HHC). What shines out about their work among Holocaust Survivors living in Israel is not the financial assistance for those in poverty, or the logistical achievement of setting up a network of hundreds of social care groups all around the country, admirable as those achievements are. It is the honour and love that is shown personally to each of the elderly Survivors through small, almost insignificant details. When HHC invites them to a meal, the table is beautifully arranged with flowers and matching d├ęcor. Anyone approaching the table can see that welcome and loved guests are expected. If you are one of those guests, your heart is touched to see the care that has been made for your visit. The Survivors who have experienced so much suffering at the hands of other human beings, and even now find themselves forgotten and struggling to make ends meet, are here to be showered with love and attention. 'This is a gift from God,' said one lady. 'I feel very loved here, I feel at home.' said another.

HHC volunteers present birthday flowers to Survivor
The love that the staff and volunteers show is evident in the little details. Bouquets are presented to those with a birthday and time is given for whoever wants to share their story or show photos of the family they lost. Christian groups and volunteers from overseas come to express their love too, with gifts and songs and dances. The words of Isaiah the prophet are taken seriously by those who run HHC, "Comfort, comfort my people, says your God..." They do this in many ways, from providing monthly support to thousands and mobilising hundreds of volunteers, to organising major events and preserving the memories of Holocaust Survivors.

"He brought me to the banquet hall, And his banner over me was love."  wrote the author of Song of Songs. In the same way, these victims of the Holocaust tragedy are invited
to a banquet in their honour - and the banner flying over them is indeed love!

My beloved spoke and said to me,
    “Arise, my darling, my beautiful one, come with me.
     See! The winter is past; the rains are over and gone.
     Flowers appear on the earth;  the season of singing has come..."
(Song of Songs 2:10-12)

If you would like to support this expression of love to Holocaust Survivors -
click this link: DONATE HERE