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Laurie Cardoza-Moore's Statement on the Las Vegas Tragedy

 

 
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Scripture tells us: "The face of the L-RD is against those who do evil, To cut off the remembrance of them from the earth" Psalm 34:16.

For all the false libels waged against the so-called, "evil Israel and her oppressive regime",  the City Hall in Tel Aviv sent this picture to comfort their friends, the Americans. Similar to the dedication of the 9/11 Memorial in Israel after that tragic event, Israeli can rightfully express the compassionate understanding of living with the daily threat of a terrorist attack. It is comforting to know that our true friend and ally, Israel, is standing with America in this, another hour of our need for healing in the aftermath of the Las Vegas tragedy.

Americans, as we have always done during times of tragedy, are bonding together to pray to The Almighty to bring comfort to the families who lost loved ones, to those who were injured and to heal our land.     

As we prayerfully remember those who lost loved ones and those who are in need of a healing from the wounds sustained during this attack, I pray you will also thank Almighty God for the"friend who sticks closer than a brother," Israel, for sending the comfort of a true friend to us.
 

Blessings,                            

Laurie Cardoza-Moore
President & Producer - PJTN.org
ECOSOC NGO Special Envoy to the United Nations - WCICC.org
Office:  615.778.0202

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America’s Only Etrog Farmer Isn't Even Jewish – Tablet Magazine

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John Kirkpatrick and his wife, Shirley, on their farm in 2010.(Susie Wyshak/Flickr)

Growing etrogs is a difficult business. Too much sun and the yellow skin of the citrus fruit will burn; too little sun and the flowers won’t blossom. There’s infestation to worry about—red citrus mites are particularly fond of them. And then there are the religious prohibitions; blemishes render the fruit, a citron in English, useless for Sukkot, so if a branch or leaf pierces the skin of the etrog, you’re in trouble.

But John Kirkpatrick, a third-generation citrus farmer in California’s San Joaquin Valley, has overcome these obstacles and more. He’s the only large-scale grower of etrogs in the United States.

The octogenarian Kirkpatrick, who grows lemons, tangelos, and oranges in addition to etrogs on some 50 acres, is a Presbyterian. He knew almost nothing about the fruit when he was approached with an unusual business proposal more than 30 years ago. “It’s been a cultural trip for us—I’m Christian, but I now understand an awful lot about halakhic law,” Kirkpatrick said, using the Hebrew word for Jewish law, “as it relates to agriculture.”

In the fall of 1980, Kirkpatrick got a call from Yisroel Weisberger, “an Orthodox Jewish boy who worked in a Judaicia store in Brooklyn,” the farmer said. Weisberger, who also held a part-time job in a customs house handling etrog imports from Israel, was interested in finding a way to grow the fruit in America. Each Sukkot, Jews are commanded to shake the arba minim, or four species—the etrog and lulav, as well as willow and myrtle branches—to celebrate the holiday. (These days, a set of the four typically sells for $40, with the etrog the most expensive component, but can cost up to $150, depending on where it’s from. Most etrogs are imported from Israel, Italy, and Morocco.) Producing and selling them here had the potential to be a lucrative business.

But first Weisberger needed a farmer. He had heard of Kirkpatrick, a well-established citrus farmer—back then he was chairman of the Citrus Research Board—and hoped Kirkpatrick might refer him to a suitable grower. They spoke for an hour, and Kirkpatrick grew fascinated by the history and culture of the etrog, which he knew little about. “I had read about them in a five-volume set about citrus fruit,” he recalled, but he’d never seen one. Over the course of the conversation, Kirkpatrick became “convinced by the attractive-sounding value of the fruit,” as he put it. “You’ve already found your man,” he said when Weisberger asked him for some names. “And from there it was onward and upwards.”

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John Kirkpatrick’s etrog orchard. (Susie Wyshak/Flickr)
Success didn’t come easy. “I found out that although I’m an expert citrus grower, I was not an expert etrog grower,” Kirkpatrick said. “It’s easier to grow 2,000 acres of oranges or lemons than to grow one acre of etrogs.” A friend of Weisberg’s helped them acquire plants from an Israeli grove, but the first few years were particularly tough. In the beginning, they produced “mediocre fruit that sold on street for $2 or $3 a piece,” Kirkpatrick said.

Unlike the other fruit Kirkpatrick grew, etrogs came with an additional set of rules. “It requires understanding of halakhah,” Kirkpatrick said. The lineage of each etrog tree must be certified, and the fruit can’t be grown on grafted or budded trees. Rabbinical supervision is required.

Kirkpatrick knows his Jewish religious terminology, at least as it pertains to etrogs. He recounted the differing opinions about the necessity of pitoms, or stems, to be intact to qualify the fruit as “complete.” And he explained that his business began to turn around in 1987, “when we got to our first shmita” —the last year in the seven-year agricultural cycle mandated by the Torah as a year of rest—“and had a pretty good year.” (In 1995 Weisberger got his brother-in-law Yaakov Shlomo Rothberg involved, and he has since taken over as Kirkpatrick’s partner.)

While Kirkpatrick was gregarious during an initial phone conversation, he declined to speak on further attempts to contact him. In the 2010 Encyclopedia of Jewish Food, Gil Marks writes about Kirkpatrick’s etrogs and reports that he has about 250 etrog trees on his farm, with his orchards producing approximately 3,000 etrogs a year suitable for use on Sukkot; some 9,000 don’t qualify.

David Wiseman, the owner of Zaide Reuven’s Esrog Farm, a Dallas-based distributor of the four species, has been buying etrogs from Kirkpatrick for 13 years. “They produce excellent quality, and are honest, honest people,” Wiseman said. “It’s a pleasure to work with people who know what they’re doing,” Wiseman’s etrogs sell together with lulavs for between $50 and $130. “John is very knowledgeable about the Jewish laws and concerned that he fulfills all the details of the Jewish laws,” Wiseman said. “If anything, he’s more stringent than he needs to be.”

And what happens to all that fruit that doesn’t make the grade? Etrogs that ripen and can’t be used for Sukkot, Kirkpatrick explained, end up being sold to greengrocers, manufacturers of marmalade, and, most frequently, the makers of citron-infused vodka—opening the distinct possibility that some of his etrogs are enjoyed year-round.


Sukkot The Feast of Tabernacles


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This week as we look forward to the Lord’s Festival  celebration of “Sukkot” (The Feast of Tabernacles)—we as Christians are encouraged  to remember the biblical re-telling of how God miraculously provided for Israel as they dwelled in huts (“sukkot”) during their 40 year sojourn in the desert after the Exodus from Egypt.

Sukkot is often called the “Season of our Joy” celebrating the harvest ingathering of the fall season. It is one of the three pilgrimage Feasts of the Lord mentioned in the Bible where God calls the nations of the earth to worship Him on His holy mountain—and He commands them not to come before Him empty handed.

Because of the call of Sukkot to rejoice for the blessing of God’s provision and care for our lives (Deut. 16:14-16) it is especially important to give of our increase.

At this time of remembrance of God’s goodness, please consider making an even greater commitment of your support of Israel by becoming a PJTN Watchman.  With a recurring monthly donation of at least $20, you will be pledging your vital support to our ongoing mission in the fight against anti-Semitism, the increase of violence on US college campus against Jewish students, and the war against the ever growing global forces that seek the destruction of Israel.

Your monthly support of PJTN can begin here! Please join us today in this important season of the remembrance of God’s increase and provision …

Shalom and blessings!

 

Laurie Cardoza-Moore
President/Proclaiming Justice to The Nations

Proclaiming Justice to The Nations
Click to Donate and Become a PJTN Watchman Today

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Become a PJTN Watchman Today

 
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In the Jewish world, we are marking a new year dawning as the observance of Rosh Hashanah brought a week steeped in prayers, shofar blasts, apples and honey and festively adorned tables welcoming a New Year.

In the context of the global challenges facing our world, for Christians committed to the protection and support of Israel, it’s a time of reflection and renewed energy to stand and let our voices be heard.

At this time of renewal,  PJTN is launching a new website that we hope you’ll visit often. This launch represents an even greater commitment by PJTN to provide all like-minded people who love and support Israel -  vital and compelling information, tools, and content to make the importance of our mission clear and easy to share.

We also want to announce a new membership goal: to enlist 5,000 “PJTN Watchmen” by December 31.  We invite you to become a PJTN Watchman today with a recurring monthly donation of at least $20 to support our mission in the fight against anti-Semitism, the BDS Movement, and the ever-growing oppressive forces that seek the destruction of Israel.

Your monthly support for PJTN can begin here!  For an amount totaling less than four coffees per month, you will be making a difference.  Please join us today!

And be sure and add visiting the new PJTN website to your daily online routine.  You’ll see how easy it is to share our mission with your friends and network of influence, to sign up and do more to protect Israel and the Jewish people each and every day—and to let your voice be heard.

On behalf of everyone at PJTN—we add our prayers to yours in wishing all Israel a peaceful and happy 5778.

Shalom and blessings!

 

Laurie Cardoza-Moore
President/Proclaiming Justice to The Nations

Proclaiming Justice to The Nations
Click to Donate and Become a PJTN Watchman Today

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Happy Rosh Hashanah from PJTN

 

 
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May your homes be filled with blessings. May the New Year be as sweet as apples dipped in honey...rich with wisdom, joy, prosperity and love. 

On behalf of the members and board of PJTN, we wish you all "Am Yisrael" - a sweet, joyous and peaceful 5778.

 

Laurie Cardoza-Moore
President/PJTN

Stanley G. Tate
Chairman of the Board

Proclaiming Justice to The Nations
Click to Donate and Become a PJTN Watchman Today

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