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Dear <<First Name>>,
Greetings to you as we come to the close of the holiest day of the year on the Jewish Calendar. Yom Kippur comes from Lev 23:26-32. Today, the Jewish people have spend their day fasting and asking for forgiveness for their sins from the past year. Today, my prayer is that as they seek forgiveness and atonement, they will find the One who paid for them all. Here in the UK, the trees are beginning to turn, we enter into the picturesque season of autumn. Major change is upon those of us here in the UK as we mourn the loss of our Queen, pray for our new King and pray for the new Prime Minister.

Let us begin by once again thanking you again for your continued support of IEF's work in and through Israel. There has been much change with John in Israel and he will share later below in more detail. We do need your prayers as we face transition and change that God will clearly lead us at this time. 

September newsletter contents:


Joining forces

by Gwen Paget

A little over a month ago, the leadership of IEF held some strategic meetings to discuss forward movement and casting vision for the future. It was a lovely time with some joining via zoom and others in person. We are at a crucial point as an organisation and we do politely ask that you would join us in prayer as we begin to step into new areas and develop existing areas of ministry.

Scotland Tour

John will be in Scotland 27th October-7th November 2022. He will be sharing at the conference on 5th November in Edinburgh and is also interested in sharing at other groups.  If you are interested in having John come to speak at your congregation or fellowship group or meeting with him, please drop me an email ( and we will arrange a time that works.

IEF Conference Gathering

Our annual conference will be on Saturday 5th November 2022 from 10am-1pm in Edinburgh in Craiglockhart Parish Church. It will be a joy to have John Sode-Woodhead in person with us for the conference and we will also have special guest Mordechai Wiseman of First Fruits Israel joining live on Zoom. You can join either in person and on zoom. Please take a moment to register for the conference and put the date in your diary. It will be wonderful to connect together and hear about the work in Israel. 

by John Sode-Woodhead

June 30th was my last official day of work with NCMI, the Norwegian Church Ministry to Israel.
It was in March 2015, while in Edinburgh, that I had a deep sense the Lord was calling me back to Israel and yet over the next months every effort I made to get back to Israel came up against a firmly closed door. It was that September that Rolf, the CEO of NCMI contacted me and invited me to join the NCMI as their next director in Israel. This took me completely by surprise and to begin with I couldn’t see it was of the Lord. I had already been approached about other, and maybe more appropriate, organisations but had not felt it was of the Lord. Now, as I and friends in the IEF prayed it became clear the Lord was calling me back to Israel through the NCMI.
As things turned out the then Israel director did not leave immediately and I was given the freedom to engage in the ministry the Lord had put on my heart and to develop them as new directions of ministry for the NCMI, as well as considering ongoing future direction for the NCMI itself. My three years in this role were exciting and very fulfilling. For NCMI I was able to develop a new strategy for the Caspari Centre and to be part of laying the ground work for the new discipleship ministry being developed. I worked with believing professionals developing a common vision and ministry and bringing it into the orbit of NCMI’s own work. As part of preparations for the new discipleship ministry, we wanted to build on my knowledge of the Bible and the Land as an archaeologist. With IEF’s support, who paid the tuition fees, I trained and am now a licenced tour guide. Through the course itself I developed many friendships, was able to live out and share my faith, and was able to help several of those who failed to pass their resits.
In July 2019 I took over as Israel Director, I was faced with two major challenges. The first was my health. I was diagnosed with Cirrhosis of the liver. It took a while before I was stabilised, since then I am badly affected by periods of total exhaustion. These can last several weeks, periods in which I am so knocked out I can’t do very much. Under the advice of my GP I am currently being considered for disability. The second was Covid. Throughout 2020 with complete shut downs months at a time it was very difficult to get much done. Although much of the ministry of NCMI was put on hold some basic functions such as the upkeep and maintenance of the buildings had to continue. Just as Covid was taking over Rolf stepped down as CEO of NCMI and Vegard succeeded him. During this period, because of my health, my staff were very protective of me and were wonderful in their love and support. This was a period that Vegard and I could work online thinking of the way ahead, and it was a period in which I could continue pursuing online the development of IEF and the ministry out here.
As Covid eased I was getting quite excited about getting on with the task before us. I was excited by much of Vegard’s vision, found we were on the same wavelength with a common vision for NCMI. I was looking forward to finally begin implementing so much of what we had been planning for so long. But, this anticipation and excitement was shattered last October when I was informed that I was being made redundant. NCMI had found it difficult to raise the funding it required, particularly in the post Covid realities. Staff were laid off in Norway and NCMI felt that by dividing my responsibilities amongst the directors of the various areas of work out here, they could also save on my salary.
I must admit that to begin with I was shocked and upset. Feeling that so much of the time and planning I had engaged in was slipping away. It was scary as I realised that I would have to begin earning my own way. Knowing I have my tour guide license helped, however, I was deeply concerned how the periods of exhaustion would impact on me as I now am registered self-employed. My initial reaction was to be angry, to feel betrayed, but as I thought and prayed through it, I realised that had I been faced with the funding dilemmas NCMI in Norway faced, I would have made the same decision. Secondly and more importantly, I realised the Lord knew this was going to happen and was in it. He is sovereign and I know He has His hand on both my health, income, and ministry.
Since stepping down from NCMI at the end of June, I have stood in for the pastor of Immanuel Church in Tel Aviv until the new pastor arrived. It has also been wonderful to continue supporting the development of NCMI’s new discipleship ministry. Last week, I gave a lecture the historical geography of the biblical periods in the land, took them on a two day study tour of Galilee in the time of Jesus, and another two days walking parts of the Jesus Trail from Nazareth to Capernaum and teaching along the way. In the coming weeks, I will have a day studying New Testament Jerusalem and then a day down at the Dead Sea sites. I am committed to continue supporting the development of NCMI in any way I can.
In the time available between guiding, I am supporting the Jerusalem Centre of Bible Translators in their transition from the founding generation. Over the years the Centre has equipped indigenous Bible translators from around the world in the ancient semitic languages and the historical geography of the Land to translate the Old Testament into their indigenous languages. We face a number of serious challenges, not least with the Ministry of Interior making it difficult to secure visas for students, and in the funding of the Centre. I also continue to work with professionals, academics, and teachers in the development of ministry amongst them, particularly as disciples of the Lord Jesus.

2022 IEF Israel Tour

In under two months, we will be setting off on an adventure to our bi-annual IEF Israel Tour 19th-27th November 2022. There are a few spaces still available, register today and see the Bible come alive as you walk the land together. 

The 2022 IEF Israel Tour will be led by John Sode-Woodhead. John is a biblical archaeologist and licensed tour guide who has spent much of his life in Israel. Due to the combined experience of John and Immanuel Tours, they will be able to bring to life the sites you visit in a new and exciting way.
The dates are 19th November until 27th November 2022. Please click below to visit our webpage, where you can find out more information about the trip and register. 
CLICK HERE to find out more about our IEF Israel Tour

We had a wonderful time together in August hearing about the Crucifixion in the Qu'ran. Click on the link to the side to catch up with this inspiring teaching.
Also, in June with Prof Tony Futerman of the Weizmann Institute who shared on Loving God with our minds. If you missed it and want to catch up on our Youtube channel this is possible. For security reasons, this lecture is private and can only be viewed upon request. Please send us your request by email and we will send you the link to view this video.

If you missed any of our other Lectures, please take a moment to catch up on our YouTube Channel:

Find us on Social Media

IEF International is now on Social Media. Please take a moment to LIKE 'IEF International' on Facebook and FOLLOW IEF International on Instagram. Also, SUBSCRIBE to our Youtube channel to hear our bi-monthly lectures.
Please use the links below to find our pages directly.

Please join with us:

- Praise God for a fabulous evening with Dr Misherky
- Praise God for God's provision over John during this transitional season
- Praise God for continued outlet for ministering amongst the students from the NCMI Discipleship programme
- Praise God for the work of JCBT and John's input, help at this time

- Pray for the upcoming Conference, that many will be blessed
- Pray for the Israel Tour, for safety of each participant and all who will join
- Pray for protection over John's health
- Pray for the Royal family and our new Government
- Continue to pray for the board and staff of IEF as they seek God's plan and purpose for IEF in the nations.
We pray a blessing over each one of you and hope that we will see you in person or on zoom at the conference in November. Please do keep in touch if you have any further questions or thoughts to share. 

Many blessings,

for IEF International
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