Passing the pro-Israel torch to younger and Hispanic evangelicals

A new breed of pro-Israel activism is emerging that is drawing Hispanic and younger evangelicals into its fold as well as using social media to spread the Christian Zionist message, according to Charisma magazine (September). These groups are responding to reports of growing anti-Semitic incidents and seeking to lead “more people to stand for Israel in new ways,” writes Shawn A Akers. The Hispanic Israel Leadership Coalition (HILC), the Fellowship of Israel Related Ministries (FIRM), and United With Israel have emerged in the past few years with new pro-Israel strategies. HILC was started to raise the awareness among Hispanic evangelicals and charismatics of the “critical intersection and America’s future and activate Hispanics as the pro-Israel, pro-Jewish demographic,” Akers writes. The coalition has held pro-Israel rallies at the U.N. in New York as well as in Miami and Los Angeles. HILC President Mario Bramnick admits that some in the Hispanic community gravitate toward the “Palestinian narrative,” but the group is producing educational materials adapted to the Latino community as well as literature to reach Muslims.

Meanwhile FIRM focuses on reaching younger Christians with the pro-Israel message, particularly pastors. Currently FIRM has a network of 40 pro-Israel ministries in the U.S. and Israel. The group held its first conference in Colorado in 2015, drawing more than 1,700. United With Israel bases much of its activism on the Internet and social media, Akers adds. The group was founded in 2011 by American Jewish software developer Michael Gerbitz and is based in Israel. In five years, UWI’s social media efforts have “won more than 3.6 million Facebook likes and nearly 40,000 followers as well as about 2,000 YouTube subscribers.” Its followers have also been active trying to remove “anti-Semitic videos from YouTube,” according to Akers.

(Charisma, 600 Rhinehart Rd., Lake Mary, FL 3274602Pro-Israel