“Who will not fear you, Lord, and bring glory to your name? For you alone are holy. All nations will come and worship before you, for your righteous acts have been revealed.” Rev. 15:4
NO SEDERS WITH GRANDPARENTS THIS YEAR: Ahead of Passover which begins at sunset on Wed. 8 April 2020 and amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, Israeli Defense Minister Naftali Bennett published a video imploring Jews around the world to abide by strict social-distancing rules at their upcoming Seders. “You do not do it this year with grandma and grandpa,” he emphasized. “There will be no Passover Seder with young people and old people together because that’s the single most lethal combination.” People may be sick with the virus for 1 to 14 days before developing symptoms. The most common symptoms of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) are fever, tiredness, and dry cough. Most people (about 80%) recover from the disease without needing special treatment. More rarely, the disease can be serious and even fatal. Older people, and people with other medical conditions such as asthma or heart disease, may be more vulnerable to becoming severely ill. Elderly people in Israel have heard one repeated message throughout March: “Stay home! Stay home! (VFI News)
ISRAELI PLANS PRODUCTION OF HUNDREDS OF RESPIRATORS DAILY: As respirators have become essential to deal with the complications of the coronavirus, First Robotics League, Microsoft Israel Research and Development, Ichilov Medical Center, Magen David Adom and Unit 108 of the Air Force have come together to find an innovative solution to avoid future shortages in Israel and around the world. The Israeli Air Force is managing the project. The idea is to create an “open source” respirator that can be mass-produced in labs at low cost, without the need for factories. “This is a product that uses a manual respiration balloon and operates it smartly and automatically. All of its assembling instructions are open to the public, in Israel and worldwide,” the developers explained. (J. Post)
ISRAEL RATED THE HIGHEST IN CORONAVIRUS SAFETY: Israel has taken unprecedented measures to protect its society from the deadly spread of the coronavirus. It has been ranked first in the COVID-19 Health Safety Countries Ranking on the Deep Knowledge Group website. The Jewish State received a score of 619. Singapore placed second with a score of 600. Slovakia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Hungary, Austria, Germany, and Greenland rounded out the top ten. The United States placed 27th with a score of 140. India was ranked the least safe country with a score of 39.48. (VFI News)
CORONAVIRUS INCREASES INTERCESSION AND FASTING IN USA: A new poll from Pew Research Center says that coronavirus has brought believers to their knees like never before and that 15% of Americans who say they never or seldom pray, have begun praying, while 24% of those say they’re without religion, have nonetheless turned to God. At the same time, an increasing number of governors and mayors in the US have declared days of fasting and prayer, as states prepare for at least another month of shutdowns. President Trump declared 15 March 2020 a national day-of-prayer and several states are matching him or going further during the coronavirus pandemic. In the past week, governors in Arkansas, Louisiana, Virginia and West Virginia, have declared statewide days of prayer. Of the three states, Louisiana has been hit the hardest, with more than 4,000 cases of the disease recorded in the state. Mayors of many cities in states where days of prayer have not been proclaimed have called upon people of faith to ask for deliverance from the pandemic. In the past week, Jackson Mississippi, Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba and Nashville, Tennessee, Mayor John Cooper issued proclamations similar in tone to that of Trump’s.
In Pennsylvania, state Rep. Stephanie Borowicz noted that 30 March 2020, her proposed day, was the anniversary of a day of prayer called by President Abraham Lincoln in 1863. “Intoxicated with unbroken success, we have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace, too proud to pray to the God that made us!”. Borowicz’s resolution reads. “It behooves us then to humble ourselves before the offended Power, to confess our national sins and to pray for clemency and forgiveness”. In Ohio, more than 100 Christian leaders called upon Ohioans to participate in “a season of corporate prayer and fasting” from 5 April 2020 through 16 April 2020. “We stand in solidarity as a faith community during these extraordinary times being fully convinced in the words of Psalm 91 that only the Most-High God will be our refuge and fortress and will deliver us from the perilous pestilence,” the group said in a statement. (VFI News)
ONGOING PA INCITEMENT: The Palestinian Media Watch (PMW) has noted that “instead of the monies that the PA is spending on compensation for terrorists during March 2020, it could have purchased 387,143 coronavirus test kits, or 465 ventilators.” A notice published on PA media reads: “Since the wheels of production, import, and consumption have stopped, there will be a great drop, of more than 50%, in the PA’s income – the international aid will decrease, because the whole world is in crisis, and therefore we will act according to a more modest emergency budget.” PMW noted that the first group to get paid for the month of March 2020 will be medical and security employees, and the second group will be jailed terrorists and the families of “martyrs” – terrorists who were killed while carrying out terror attacks. Despite Israel’s cooperation with the Palestinian Authority in fighting the Coronavirus, the PA has made statements comparing Israel to the deadly virus itself and for weeks didn’t mention Israel’s help at all. An editorial in the paper compared Israel to “all of nature’s viruses,” stating it is “more dangerous.” Meanwhile, almost two-thirds of Israelis (63%) think that Israel should aid the Palestinians during the coronavirus outbreak, according to a study published by the Truman Institute for Peace at the Hebrew University. Among those surveyed were Arabs and Jews, religious and non-religious, and people from all age groups. (VFI News)
UN MUST CONDEMN ABBAS’S CHARGE THAT IDF IS SPREADING COVID-19: Israel’s Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon said on Mon. 30 March 2020 that the United Nations must condemn the incitement of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas against Israel, with his false charge that IDF soldiers are spreading coronavirus in Judea & Samaria, “At this time, despite Israel’s aid to the Palestinian Authority, we hear inciting comments coming from the Palestinian prime minister, who accuses IDF soldiers of spreading coronavirus to the PA,” Danon said. “There is no place for such senseless statements by the leadership of the PA. The UN must condemn these remarks.” At the meeting, UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Nickolay Mladenov spoke out against both Palestinian and Israeli incitement, but did not mention Abbas. “Palestinian leaders continued to make inciteful and provocative statements. Fatah’s official social media pages glorified perpetrators of previous terror attacks against Israelis, and displayed content encouraging children to carry out violence against Jews,” Mladenov said. “PA officials also delivered speeches praising perpetrators of attacks, denying Israel’s existence, and denying the Jewish historical connection to Jerusalem,” he continued. “Hamas officials encouraged attacks against Israelis in Judea & Samaria and the launching of explosive devices using balloons from Gaza. (VFI News)
The suggestions, opinions and scripture references made by VFI writers and editors are based on the best information received.
Blessings from Jerusalem,
Barry Segal with the Editorial Staff