HISTORY OF KEHILAT PORIYA (Poriya Congregation)
Poriya Congregation was birthed through the hearts of several who attended various congregations in the Galilee. While dedicated to their various congregations, these men and women also gathered weekly for prayer, praise and worship meetings on Monday mornings, in the home of Eric and Terri Morey, who were attending a congregation in Haifa. In 2004 the Lord gave the Moreys the vision and burden to start a congregation in their home so they could further reach into the community in which they live. The keyword in the calling was “community”—to be a community as in the Book of Acts, “…breaking bread together from house to house…” and not just a place where people gather once or twice a week. Since Poriya Illit is a small village with a much larger percentage of believers than any other place in the country, it seemed an ideal location. The Morey’s had a home with a large living room which can seat 60 comfortably, a lovely yard and a roof where larger events could be held.
Part of the vision was to be accountable to a larger organization, so Kehilat Poriya became one of the congregations in the Tents of Mercy network, accountable to Eitan Shishkoff and the elders of Tents of Mercy. On May 25, 2005 the congregation was officially launched with a gathering of over 100 believers from the area, including leaders of other congregations. Eitan Shishkoff and Moshe Morrison laid hands on the Moreys and ordained them for this service.
In 2008, the Moreys retired from their management positions at the Galilee Experience, a Ministry/business in Tiberias, and then had more time to devote to congregational ministry. The congregation has grown from about a dozen believers to approximately 50 regular attendees. It is the heart and vision of the congregation to maintain their meetings in a home setting, just as the early New Testament churches met. Governance is via plurality of Elders. Kehilat Poriya has become what the Lord showed the Moreys, a true community of believers modeled after the churches in the New Testament. The growth strategy, as we approach the capacity of the Morey’s home, is not to move into a larger building but to help plant other home-based congregations in the area.
MINISTRY OF KEHILAT PORIYA (Poriya Congregation)
In addition to our main service on Saturday morning, we have several regular meetings during the week, including prayer for the community; Bible study focusing on End Times; Youth meetings; Worship and prayer and, on the lighter side, Sunday night at the movies. We also take the congregation on outings periodically, the last one being to the national believers gathering near Jerusalem on Pentecost. One of our Elder couples just started a House of Prayer, which they would like to become 24/7 eventually. Another of our Elder couples has a ministry called Be In Health. We are the sponsors of a very dynamic inter-congregational youth ministry called Voice of Many Waters.
Our congregation is actively involved in various ways of reaching out to others. From helping meet the needs of widows to being involved in the lives of orphans, our heart is to be the heart of the Lord. Since our congregation meets in the home of Eric and Terri Morey, operating expenses are minimal. This allows us to invest more of the tithes and offerings back into the needs of others. There are various needs among our congregation and the local tithes and offerings help meet those needs, as well as gifts and support from other ministries in the land and elsewhere in the world. We also reach outside our congregation to help meet the needs of others. In addition to believers, we also help meet the needs of those who are yet to come into the Kingdom. It is through this outreach that several have come to the Kingdom.
We have sensed from the Lord a calling to reach out to the non-believing members of the Kibbutzim (communal settlements) in the Jordan Valley. These settlements helped establish the State of Israel, their parents and grandparents were the pioneers in this Land. We see this as a type of the “Valley of Dry Bones,” which has been restored physically and is now awaiting spiritual restoration.