Encounter Gospel News | Waging Peace on The Internet: The Jerusalem Prayer Team Hits 20 Million Facebook Fans
The Jerusalem Prayer Team
, a worldwide social media initiative created by the Friends of Zion Heritage Center in Jerusalem, has just exceeded the 20 million followers, globally. The page is now the No. 1 ranked page in Israel, with a greater social media footprint than the combined followings of Hollywood star Gal Gadot and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
“In a time marked by hate, persecution, and intolerance – often beginning on social media – we’ve decided to use the internet as a tool for solidarity, inspiration, and friendship. We wage peace on the internet,” said Dr. Mike Evans, founder of the Friends of Zion Heritage Center in Jerusalem. “The Jerusalem Prayer Team is proud to bring together millions of young adults, from countless nations and languages, who want to see peace flourish in the Middle East.”
The page is succeeding in its primary mission – to engage a new, global generation. Over 70 percent of the page’s supporters are millennials, and it has millions of members across many countries in the world, including over 3 million in Indonesia, the country with the world’s largest Muslim population.
With over 3.8 million weekly engagements on social networks the Jerusalem Prayer Team Facebook page has more weekly impressions than President Donald J. Trump and many times more than the largest Christian cable network.
Dr. Evans notes, “wars of the 21st century wars will be multifaceted: economic, digital, ideological and – nearly all of them – proxy wars. Most of them will be fueled by the internet. The internet is also the solution for the frontline for those of us who dream of peace, especially in the Middle East.”
In America, millennials now total 75.4 million and purchase 54 percent of goods and services via their smartphone. They reject cable news and turn to social networks for information. According to Dr. Evans, all these factors make reaching millennials an imperative.
“In many ways, millennials are already shaping our world, but we must reach them where they are: social media,” Dr. Evans said. “We must not forget that Facebook began on a college campus.”
“Building the Jerusalem Prayer Team is just the beginning. This, among many other initiatives at the Friends of Zion Heritage Center, prepare us to fight a sophisticated war against anti-semitism online and to rally global advocacy for the Jewish people as never before,” said Dr. Evans. “With the BDS Movement, UNESCO, and anti-Israel sentiment on the rise worldwide we are prepared at the right time to provide real help to the Jewish people.”
As part of a comprehensive, multi-faceted strategy to promote Christian support for Israel, the Jerusalem Prayer Team is an initiative of the Friends of Zion Heritage Center, which also includes the highly acclaimed Friends of Zion Museum in Jerusalem and the future Ambassador Institute, and the Corrie ten Boom House in Haarlem, Holland.
Located in the heart of Jerusalem, the Friends of Zion Museum retells the stories of gentiles who have supported the state of Israel and the Jewish community. It’s the first smart museum in the Middle East and the most “technologically saturated” museums in the world. During the first year of operation, over 100,000 individuals toured the facility. Its visitors have included state leaders like President Reuven Rivlin of Israel, President Rosen Plevneliev of Bulgaria, former U.S. presidential candidate Gov. Mike Huckabee, Nobel laureates, ambassadors, and NBA and NFL athletes, among others.
The prestigious Friend of Zion award, which honors an individual’s support for the State of Israel, has been conferred to President George W. Bush, Crown Prince Albert II of Monaco, Pope Francis, and most recently to Gov. Huckabee and President Plevneliev.
The Ambassador Institute is the most recent initiative by the Friends of Zion Heritage Center to fight international anti-Semitism. It will have a real time social network communication hub that will be linked to the thousands of Christian TV and radio stations, print media, churches, and universities worldwide with original content features and video clips distributed on the wire weekly. The center will also collaborate with one of the world’s leading research companies to create Israel’s first Christian Zionist think tank.
About Friends of Zion – Located in the heart of Jerusalem, the Friends of Zion Heritage Center is dedicated to bringing stories of love and heroism to the world. Magnificently told using ground-breaking technology found nowhere else in the nation, visitors experience the unfolding story as though stepping back in time. Accompanied by a moving original musical score, fantastic surround sound, lighting second-to-none, and interactive displays that appear to come to life before your very eyes, the Friends of Zion Museum is a once in a lifetime experience for audiences from around the world. Visitors enter a whole new world, where they meet the biblical figures, academics, businessmen, and military officials who, through their faith, have forged an everlasting bond between the Jewish and Christian peoples.
Dr. Michael D. Evans is a #1 New York Times Bestselling author, award-winning journalist, commentator, minister, and head of several prominent international non-profit organizations in the U.S., Netherlands, and Israel, including the Friends of Zion Heritage Center and Museum. He is considered one of the world’s leading experts on Israel and the Middle East, and is one of the most sought after speakers on the subject.