According to Israeli law, a foreign spouse of an Israeli citizen will automatically be granted citizenship if their partner is Israeli (Israeli Nationality Law of 1952.)
That is, at least in theory, regardless of their religious views:
“Israel will ensure complete equality of social and political rights to all its inhabitant irrespective of religion, race or sex; it will guarantee freedom of religion, conscience, language, education and culture” (The Declaration of the Establishment of the State of Israel \ 14.5.1948)
However, because the Ministry of Interior is under the control of Orthodox religious Jews who have great disdain for followers of Jesus, these rights are regularly withheld. This leaves Jewish believers in Jesus in a predicament where they must spend tens of thousands on lawsuits to take the matter to the court system, simply to receive what was rightfully theirs in the first place.
Andreas Stutz, an Israeli citizen who received an honorable accomplishment award from the President of Israel himself while serving in the Israeli Air Force (IDF), is one of our own college professors and is a Jewish Israeli believer in Jesus. Andreas married his Polish sweetheart and together they have two children (who are also Israeli citizens).
Almost two years ago, the Stutz family began the process of acquiring citizenship for his wife – as a wife and mother of Israeli citizens. The process which should have been quick and immediate became a long drawn out series of investigations. It certainly seems like this case was receiving unusual, more stringent process than others, and no doubt this is because of the fact that the Stutz family are believes in Jesus. This caused great distress and caused them to consider leaving Israel.
Since the beginning of the process, Andy’s wife started suffering from severe health problems that required urgent treatment. However, without citizenship, she cannot receive treatment in the Israeli healthcare system.
Last week, the Ministry of Interior invited the Stutz family to come and finally receive the Israeli identification documentation for his wife. Excited, the Stutz family went to the Ministry of Interior, only to find out that once again, their request had been rejected, and no reason was given.
”ONCE, AFTER MUCH INVESTIGATION AT THE NETANYA OFFICE OF THE MINISTRY OF INTERIOR, THE CHIEF OFFICER, A RELIGIOUS WOMAN, ADMITTED TO ME DIRECTLY THAT THE ONLY REASON WE WERE BEING HARASSED AND DENIED CITIZENSHIP, IS BECAUSE WE BELIEVE IN JESUS.”
Humiliated and exhausted from fighting, the Stutz family have no other choice but to uproot their kids from their lives and to leave Israel and go back to Poland – the country where Jews had to escape for their lives from only some years ago.
Please pray for them and SHARE this post until it will reach high places among governments and people of influence!
This article originally appeared on One For Israel and is reposted with permission.