David Yaniv was born and raised in Israel. He spent two years in the Israeli army** before becoming a tour guide. During the course of one of his tours, he met Sheila, who would become his wife. Sheila was born and raised in South Africa. In order for David to meet her family, they traveled there for a visit, which lasted 12 years. The Yaniv's were blessed with two sons during this time, and when the boys grew older the family decided to return to Israel. Upon arrival, they joined a moshav, which is an agricultural community.
Three years into their life on the moshav, David slipped and fell, injuring his back. Although the doctors couldn't find anything wrong, the pain grew worse until David was consuming 50 painkillers a day just to cope. Three years later, a neurosurgeon discovered two strangulated hernias on his spinal cord. Assured that a "minor operation" would make him well again, David agreed to the surgery. However, when he awoke from the surgery, he had no feeling from the waist down. The next morning, the doctor explained that something must have gone wrong, and that David would be paralyzed for life.
Seven and a half years later, David began watching the Christian television program, The 700 Club. During one of the broadcasts, David gave his life to Yeshua/Jesus. His wife was not happy to learn of this, but later she too accepted Yeshua as her Lord & Savior.
A few months later, the Lord miraculously healed David of his paralysis! His body had been made whole again, and David & Sheila were eager to share the wonderful news to all who would listen.
Being a Christian on an Israeli moshav proved difficult. In 1988, after a series of painful events, the Yaniv's were voted out of the moshav and were given ten days to vacate. The Yaniv's had lost everything; their home, their jobs, their friends, and a relationship with their youngest son, all in one month. The Lord used this situation for the good, however, and David & Sheila were presented with a full scholarship to "Christ For the Nations" in Dallas, Texas.
After graduating and spending some time as an evangelist, God revealed His plan for their lives to David. He directed them to go to the Pacific Northwest; specifically the greater Seattle area, and begin a ministry.
Roots Messianic Congregation was born in 1995. Pastor David & Sheila have surrendered their lives to the purpose the Lord has given them, which is to be a bridge between the non-Jewish and Messianic Church, thus bringing non-Jew and Jewish believers together as one body in Christ. Pastor David & Sheila are committed to the reconciliation of the Church of Yeshua under one banner of Truth...."The new self allows no room for discriminating between non-Jew and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, foreigner, savage, slave, free man; on the contrary, in all, the Messiah is everything." Colossians 3:11.