In June of 2020, Eric Dubasak, pastor of Grace Community Church, a Charis Fellowship congregation in Ormond Beach, Fla., will be moving with his wife and three children to Israel to begin his new stage in ministry.
Erik’s passion for Israel began early in his walk with God. Soon after becoming a believer in 2001, Randy Smith, teaching pastor at Grace Church in Sebring, Fla., came as a guest speaker to his church.
“As a young believer, I was seeking God’s calling for my life, and I noticed the clarity and power that came through Randy’s teaching by understanding the land and culture of Israel,” says Erik.
Erik has been working bi-vocationally as Grace Community Church’s pastor, with plans to eventually pursue a doctoral degree.
“When it came time for us to think about the next step, it seemed like the best time in terms of where I am with my educational and ministry training,” Erik says. “Plus, our kids are at an age where they can adapt well to an experience like this.”
While the family could get by on English in Israel, they have the desire of learning Hebrew by immersion into the culture.
“My wife’s fluency in Spanish came from immersion into Latin American culture. We believe this is the best way to learn a language, and we intend to learn as much as we can while in Israel,” says Erik.
Once support is raised, the Dubasaks plan to rent a home in Jerusalem or the West Bank. They will be studying at Jerusalem University College, because one of the easiest ways for a non-Jewish person to reside in Israel for an extended period of time is to be a student. Their visas allow them to stay for two years, after which they’ll be seeking God’s will for their next steps.
To begin their ministry, the Dubasaks want to get involved in a local church.
“We are very interested in serving at Christ Church, an Anglican church in the Old City of Jerusalem,” says Erik. “This church has a historic commitment to teaching the Jewish roots of Christianity.”
Erik is excited about the cultural experience that can only be gained by living in Israel.
“There are many aspects of the current culture that still reflect the ancient biblical culture, and I look forward to being able to tell first-hand stories of my cultural experiences that will help people understand Scripture in deeper ways.”
Erik is also interested in using his apologetics skills in interfaith dialogue to give unbelievers in Israel a greater understanding of Christianity. While debating can be intimidating, Erik remains confident.
“The truth and power of our message gives me confidence,” he says. “The gospel brings truth, love, and hope to broken situations like no other message in the world.”
Eventually, Erik also hopes to lead tours in Israel. While many Christians visit the Holy Land each year, most tour guides are Jewish or Arab and have a better understanding of Catholicism or Eastern Orthodoxy than evangelical Christianity.
Erik shares, “I want to be available to guide Christians into an immersive experience of learning the Bible and becoming more faith-filled and better informed disciples of Christ.”