Following countless hours of trying to retrieve my video of Binyamin Netanyahu’s speech, I finally gave up and pronounced my phone dead. May you rest in peace. Not. I can’t stand you.
Aside from that, it was quite an experience however, to stand in the hall in Jerusalem, with more than 4 out of 12 thousand MASA participants that have signed up for various programs this year. It was a somewhat nostalgic thought to remember that this was exactly the place I found myself a year ago; new to Israel, both excited and unsure about the changes.
Being part of the program as a participant and now seeing it from the perspective of a much larger picture, I must admit that the MASA initiative is more than any other country would sign up for. The way Israel is determined to bring young Jews from around the world and show them Israel beyond the camels and Patriarchs is simply worth admiration.
As the MASA staff run around frantically, resembling headless chickens, making sure that all the smallest details are taken care of; as the new wave of young Jews danced and enjoyed themselves, freshly immersed in their programs, facing their first struggles, I knew, and I hope they realised it too, that they have embarked on the journey of a lifetime. The journey to the centre of themselves. I am hardly speaking from the perspective of someone who needs to advertise MASA in order to make sure that an increasing number of participants come every year; quite frankly, I think that some need to sit a maturity test before being allowed to join, but from the perspective of the ex-participant, seeing how my life has changed, I couldn’t recommend it more. I so hope that my Polish group came too.
Knowing how difficult the situation in Israel is, regardless the rockets, attacks and all sort of things that the Palestinian Arabs strive to invent to keep up occupied with – there was not even one cancellation. The Jewish spirit brought these young people here and as they made this leap of faith into the new realm – I wish them that they find themselves quite at home. In this case I couldn’t agree more with our Prime Minister.