Heritage Florida Jewish News - Central Florida's Independent Jewish Voice

Israeli guest speaker at annual Sister City (Cocoa and Beit Shemesh) gala


January 25, 2019

Meir Malka (l) with Jordan Miles at the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem when they presented artwork from the Sister Cities to the embassy.

Workers busy with new road construction in Beit Shemesh, Israel, have uncovered remains of a city from the time of the first Temple. The Sister City program of Cocoa, Florida and Beit Shemesh invites the community to learn more about these exciting new finds at its annual membership gala, on Monday, Jan. 28 from 5:30-8 p.m. at the Central Life Church (behind Temple Beth Sholom), 5995 N. Wickham Road.

After a light supper of Israeli food and live Israeli music, guest speaker Meir Malka from Beit Shemesh will illustrate new archaeological discoveries at Tel Beit Shemesh, of the ancient city of Beit Shemesh from the time of the Kings.

"A three-hundred-member team is working hard over the next six months to excavate the ancient Beit Shemesh city," said Malka, a life-time resident of Beit Shemesh and retired director of the Keren Shemesh Foundation. He said another great discovery is a beautiful mosaic floor in a Byzantine church from the time of the Emperor Justinian.

"The stones do talk," said Malka. "You just have to listen very carefully. There are so many mysteries that I would like to share with you. I can't wait to tell you the stories that have been hiding for over 2000 years."

Malka has visited Brevard multiple times. He recalled his first visit in 2005 when he met with the Jewish Federation and others. A new video that salutes his efforts and outlines the history of the organization, "Why Sister City?" will be shown.

For 2019 Sister City plans a Purim celebration in March and will welcome Israeli scouts in June. Other activities include upcoming trips to Israel. The event is free and open to the public.


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