Joyfully, Israel celebrated her 75th birthday on April 26th: the miraculous rebirth of the Jewish nation only three years after our darkest period, the Holocaust. Resurrected life sprouted out from the seeds of sorrow and death. God cares for His people: “In a desert land He found him, in a barren and howling waste. He shielded him and cared for him; he guarded him as the apple of his eye, like an eagle that stirs up its nest and hovers over its young, that spreads its wings to catch them and carries them aloft.” (Deuteronomy 32:10-11) In the deserts, in the barren places, in difficulty, God finds the needy to shield, to guard, and to carry. In this newsletter, I share with you the stories of those who suffered losses yet chose the path of courage, finding new hope and joy.
My heartfelt thanks to all of our supporters who stretch out hands of love to those who need to be carried on wings of hope.
Sandy, as the National Director, had the privilege of attending the Heartbeat International conference, this year in Louisville, Kentucky. She addressed the convention on Israel’s Independence Day. It was a joy to share and celebrate with like-minded pro-life friends the miracles that God has done for our nation on its 75th birthday and for Be’ad Chaim on our 35th anniversary.
The Gardens continue to be a place of comfort as trees are planted in memory and honor of babies now in heaven. Recently, our prayer hostess, Laurel, planted trees for people abroad, sending them photographs and a beautiful certificate. There are a wide variety of reasons that trees are planted. A local woman planted in honor of two miscarriages that her daughter had suffered. A young couple planted a tree on the anniversary of their baby’s death. A remorseful man asked that a tree be planted in memory of the baby he had aborted many years ago. Several trees were planted by couples who had suffered still births. These couples had been referred to us by others who planted trees and were comforted. “Comfort ye, comfort ye, my people” is the theme of this special three-acre forested garden, where trees sprout new life in honor of the lives that are no longer with us.
Mali, a single Ethiopian refugee, is 33 years old. She works very hard cleaning homes to support herself and pay the high rent for her apartment in Jerusalem. Her neighbors have become her family and support. When Mali found herself in an unplanned pregnancy, she was scared. Abortion seemed to be her best choice. She does not have Israeli citizenship, and, therefore, has no rights in the country. A friend helped her connect with Be’ad Chaim so that we could provide her with new hope, emotional support, and all of her baby’s needs through our Operation Moses Project. Baby girl Alisa was born in December 2022. Mali’s two neighbors have been more than family to her. They stood by her side during the birth and helped with the baby afterwards. Throughout the years, we have seen God provide family for those who have no family, provide the practical needs of the poor, and provide loving support for the lonely. Be’ad Chaim graciously shares with all in need, according to God’s Word: “When you reap your harvest in your field and have forgotten a sheaf [of grain] in the field, you shall not go back to get it; it shall be for the stranger, for the orphan, and for the widow, so that the LORD your God may bless you in all the work of your hands.” (Deuteronomy 24:19)
Lesia arrived in Israel as a Ukrainian refugee. She was pregnant and desperate for help and support. In her trouble, God found her and guided her to us, which allowed us to supply all that she needed this year for her new baby girl Liza, who was born last January. Recently, despite the ongoing war, Lesia and her children returned to Ukraine so that her six-year-old son could have back surgery. Leisa’s husband, who has cancer, was waiting for them in Ukraine. Lesia told our counselor that since the war in Ukraine there have been no kindergartens or schools, so the kids will stay home with her for now. Amid their difficulties, let’s pray that God will shield and guard this precious family.
Adorable Pe’er recently turned one year old. She’s very friendly and loves people, as you can see from her photo. When her mother, Sigal, was seven months pregnant, her husband left without any warning. After Pe’er was born, he waited months to contact them; he has only seen her a few times. Sigal was deeply disappointed that her marriage didn’t work out, but she says that Pe’er is the light of her life, although it was tough learning to be a single mom at only 21 years old. Now, she can’t fathom life without Pe’er. Sigal is deeply grateful for the encouragement and support that she’s received throughout this time of sadness mixed with new life and much joy.
Yali and Baby Girl Emma
Every week, we gather prayer requests from our counselors around the country. On Monday mornings, these prayer letters are sent out around the globe. God answers prayer! Our Netanya counselor, Helen, shared this wonderful story:
In early January, I had a referral from our hotline from Yali, who was shocked to discover that she was 24 weeks pregnant. We continued to talk until she was 26 weeks pregnant, yet she remained adamant to abort her baby, and then she blocked my number so no further conversation was possible. I later learned that she had made an appointment for the “termination of pregnancy committee” in order to receive permission for a government-funded abortion. She hadn’t realized that there are different committees depending on the stage of pregnancy and was told that the committee did not have the jurisdiction to permit a late term abortion. Yali was confused, not having realized that she would need to request special permission, which seemed beyond her emotional ability. At 35 weeks, she shared her dilemma with a friend who believes the Bible, supports LIFE choices, and phoned back to the Be’ad Chaim office. Yali’s older sister helped her tell their mother who turned out to be very reassuring and supportive. Yali gave birth to her daughter Emma on April 10th.
She realizes that Emma's life is a miracle from God, who protected and preserved both her and the baby from suffering.
Since renting a lovely apartment on the Southern coast, we have had the privilege of providing a home to five different women who needed housing. Some of the pregnant women stayed in the Home for several months, others for a year or more. Recently, we received 18-year-old Rahab, a Bedouin woman who had been homeless. She hasn’t been in touch with her family for four years. As a result of being at-risk, at the end of her pregnancy, and without a home, she was hospitalized by the welfare department in the Negev. Various nonprofits phoned and asked if we could provide safe housing. Before Rahab entered our Home, there had been discussion regarding the future of the baby, because social workers felt that Rahab was not competent to mother a child. Yet, after the social workers observed how Yael, our house mother, tenderly cares for the women in the home and teaches Rahab basic life skills, they have decided that, with our help, Rahab is able to mother her baby. They will continue to monitor the situation.
Rahab gave birth on April 12th to her daughter and named her Layan. Yael, as a good shepherdess, is training Rahab to be a loving mother for her new child. “He will feed his flock like a shepherd; he will gather the lambs in his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and will gently lead those that have their young” (Isaiah 40:11). The Home is a place of protection, love, and training for women who, in many ways, need to be mothered themselves.
Nava, 26 years old, is a single mom who had a job in a clothing shop. Her partner left her when he found that she was pregnant. Nava has had one abortion in the past and was afraid to go through another abortion, because she still suffers from thoughts of the baby she could have had. Contacting us through the internet, Nava found a listening ear and an offer for practical help through her local counselor. Her baby boy Or Chaim was born the end of January. His name is very special in Hebrew and means “the light of life,” given to him because Nava says she believes that he will bring light into her life. Although it is difficult to be a single mom, she chooses to be positive and live with the hope that her life will and can change for the better.
Angela is 32 years old and was the mother of three small children. She and her husband found us on Google when they were looking for an abortion for their fourth child. Angela said that this pregnancy was too soon after the birth of their last child and their finances were tight, so she wanted to abort. She made it sound so easy. Yet, she had experienced a miscarriage in the past and shared that the result of that loss had been uncontrollable crying. It is striking how words can make such a difference when describing the preborn child. The product of an unwanted pregnancy is called a “fetus,” but the loss through miscarriage is called a “baby.” Angela had contemplated aborting a “fetus,” but the miscarriage had caused the death of her “baby.”
Israel is claimed to be number one in the world for the amount of prenatal testing. Often, when there is any suspicion of abnormality with the baby (fetus), abortion is not only recommended, but parents are told that it is necessary. While most parents will obey the doctors, there are those who stand their ground in defense of their unborn child. I have marveled at the tenacity and courage of parents who knew that their child might not survive birth yet chose to continue the pregnancy. Rachel and her husband contacted us in October 2022, when she was 7 months pregnant. They had planned this third pregnancy and were thrilled that they were having a boy after their two daughters. Yet, doctors told them that their son would have serious heart defects, may not survive, and if he did, he would require multiple surgeries throughout his life. Rachel and her husband met with our counselor, talked about their fears and their options, and chose to give their son every possible opportunity for life. Precious Lavie was born in early December and immediately required heart surgery. Lavie passed away from infections when he was three weeks old. When we visited Rachel and her husband, they grieved, yet were full of thanks—thanks that they had been able to meet their son, thanks that they knew that they had done ALL that they could for him, thanks that they and their parents had held him before he passed, thanks that God had spared him from repeated surgeries and suffering. It is an honor to meet people of valor like Rachel and her husband.