Last weekend one of our residents, Larissa, celebrated her 90th birthday! She is the second one who's turned 90 years young this year!
Larissa's younger brother travelled from Australia, and her niece came from Moldova to celebrate with her.
It was truly a wonderful day. The Home prepares a special lunch for each resident's birthday, and everyone enjoyed great food and dessert. After the lunch Larissa with another resident of the Home, Ron, gave a violin performance, playing a medley of popular hymns. She received a lovely bouquet of flowers and many kisses from Shoshana, our manager's wife. Our house mother, Natalia, who has known Larissa for many years, also spoke about her and congratulated her.
Larissa was born in Odessa, Ukraine, a city that was known as a "mother" of the Jews in the former Soviet Union because it had the largest Jewish population in the country. She is a Holocaust survivor. During the war her family had to escape from Odessa and ended up in Moldova, where Larissa lived after the war. She worked as a pastry chef in a factory and got married. The couple were childless, and her husband died from cancer in 1993. Larissa made aliya to Israel in 1998 and moved into the Home in 2009 when her health deteriorated.
Larissa has a very lively disposition to life and a bubbling personality. She is always hungry for God. Every week she hosts a Russian-speaking prayer group in her room. Says she: "I have no family in Israel, but I feel at home in Beit Ebenezer. I can rely on the staff to help me in all my needs, and I am happy to be a part of Ebenezer family".
We pray for many more happy and fruitful years for Larissa. After all, she is only 90 years young! May the joy of the Lord be her strength every day.
You can read more about her story and stories of our other residents in our book, "Remember What God Has Done". See more details about the book at the bottom of this page.