The City of Ariel was blessed with a very special group of young visitors at the end of June. Faith Bible Chapel, from Arvada Colorado, sent a group of their teens and young adult students to Ariel for a couple of days. Following in the footsteps of Faith Bible Chapel’s leaders, Pastor George and Cheryl Morrison, the group came with the expressed purpose of contributing to the community of Ariel.
As in the past, the group brought gifts to the IDF soldiers at the Antenna Hill Post. They also had the unique opportunity to experience some of the ropes and climbing courses at the new Ariel National Leadership Development Park. In addition, the people of Ariel had the pleasure of hosting the visitors in their homes. But. beyond all of the friendships and in addition to all of the wonderful time that we shared, there was one experience that simply cannot be forgotten.
For years guests from Faith Bible Chapel have planted vines in the Brenda Wygant Memorial Vineyard – a true modern day realization of biblical prophecy: “Again you shall plant vineyards on the mountains of Samaria; the planters shall plant and shall enjoy the fruit” (Jeremiah 31:5). Brenda was one of the Faith Bible Chapel International Singers and Dancers, an extraordinary woman and a good friend to the City of Ariel. Though the vineyard is full to capacity, its fruits have not yet reached their full potential.
Cheryl Morrison has dreamt of allowing the Brenda Wygant Memorial Vineyard to bear endless fruits. When she suggested that the Faith Bible Chapel youth group dedicate some volunteer time towards working in the vineyard, American Friends of Ariel was only too happy to facilitate.
The materials were purchased and the date was set. The Faith Bible Chapel group, led by Justin Friedman, arrived in Ariel in the evening. Teenagers from the City of Ariel hosted our visitors in their homes, and arranged a barbecue for their guests. The group set out for the vineyard first thing in the morning.
The young volunteers worked hard. It was a hot Middle East summer’s day and the sun was beating down, but that didn’t seem to bother anyone. Some of the volunteers worked on setting poles in the ground and others on connecting the poles with wiring. Some volunteers worked on tying the vines to the poles and wires and others on pruning some of the vines. Slowly but surely, the vineyard began to take form.
One morning was enough for our young volunteers to organize and shape much of the vineyard. The vines have been lifted, providing them with an opportunity to grow stronger and to bear more fruit than ever before.
Rafi, one of the city’s maintenance workers who spent the morning with the group, asked to address the group to express his appreciation for their efforts. He summed it up best when he said: “You did an excellent job today. Your work was an amazing success – because you were motivated by your souls”.
American Friends of Ariel thanks all of the wonderful volunteers, who made the City of Ariel even more beautiful and fruitful, and who made the Brenda Wygant Memorial Vineyard even more delightful.
May Brenda’s memory be blessed. Amen.