Experience Israel

The Winner of the International Bible Contest this Year is One of Our Campers, and She's From Belarus

Masha Shepelevich, 16, of Minsk, Belarus, made history this year by becoming the first contestant from the FSU ever to win or reach a top-3 spot in the International Bible Quiz

Mazal tov to Masha Shepelevich, 16, of Minsk, Belarus, who made history on Israeli Independence Day by becoming the first contestant from the FSU ever to reach a top-3 spot at the International Bible Quiz. 

A 16-year old participant from Belarus was brought to Israel by a remarkable collaboration between two units of The Jewish Agency for Israel – the Russian Speaking Jewry Unit and the Partnership Unit, responsible for organizing the Bible Contest.

Masha is now the fifth participant from her family to take part in the Bible Contest. It all started four years ago with her older brother becoming a first participant, and Masha’s sister the following year. This became a family tradition, as each year one member from the Shepelevich family took part in this exciting challenge.

We spoke with Masha and here is what she had to say about this amazing achievement:

”Tanakh is a big part of my family’s tradition and I already knew many passages, which, helped a lot. Although I did most of my studying by myself, my mom, Marina, and dad, Michael, along with my entire family, helped and supported me all the way, from the local contest in Grodno, to the international Bible Contest in Jerusalem.

Participating in the International Bible Contest was in incredible experience! Beyond the excitement of this huge honor, I had a one-time opportunity to meet many Jews from all over the world and see that we all belong to one global Jewish family. I was also able to visit and experience Israel for the first time.“

Masha has a long connection to The Jewish Agency programs in the Former Soviet Union (FSU). She first attended The Jewish Agency camp in Minsk in 2014, and is planning to attend one session this upcoming summer. Masha and her seven siblings are very active members of the Jewish community in her hometown, and are involved in the local theatre group that is representing Grodno at the annual Purimshpil theatre competition. Masha’s older brother Misha has joined The Jewish Agency’s ELI – Educational Leadership Institute to become a counselor in one of its Jewish camps in the FSU.

The International Bible Quiz, co-sponsored by The Jewish Agency, engages thousands of young people in Bible studies each year, in dozens of countries. The Jewish Agency arranges for several dozen of those in the final rounds to gather in Israel for a 2.5-week Tanach Camp. 

25 May 2017 / 29 Iyar 5777 0
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