Elliot Klayman is well known for his kindness and generosity. I have 50 years of experience to attest to this observation. Whether you have a health need, a legal need, or a prayer need, he is always ready to step up and assist by giving you his full attention. He is truly a giving person who strives to project the love of God at all times, to all people. What a distinction it is to have this Festschrift published in his honor!
Wife of 46¾ of those 50 years
They say everyone hates lawyers, right up until the time one is desperately needed. In the fall of 2017, Adonai Yireh indeed provided me with the finest legal representation. I will not ascribe to luck or chance the clear providence that put his name in my contact list, but he certainly was the Lord’s chief hand tool, shepherding me through a devastating personal and legal issue where everything was on the line. His instrumental guidance, brilliant compassion, and biblical understanding paved the way to a legal and moral victory. I owe him more than I could ever repay. Praise God for his worker, Elliot Klayman.
Law Client & Friend
In 1994, my spiritual journey led me to Beth Messiah in Columbus, Ohio. I not only came to faith in the Messiah there, but also met Elliot Klayman. Ever since I met Elliot, he has always tried to help me utilize the gifts and talents God has given me. He always provided me with opportunities to serve God and others. He has always been a source of encouragement. I am forever grateful.
Member, Beth Messiah Congregation, Columbus, Ohio
Elliot Klayman and I became friends back in the late ’80s. Introduced through his uncle, Elliot and I developed a close friendship over the years. I am a scientist; my degrees are in Physics, so I lean more heavily toward the scientific side of apologetics. Elliot became my reference source for the philosophical and historical sides, and I became aware of his many years of ministering and teaching to the Jewish community. I have witnessed his efforts to build structure and mutual assistance among Messianic Jewish congregations nationwide. This honor for his many years of service is very well deserved. May the Lord continue to guide and protect him.
Vice President, Honeywell (ret)
I met Elliot back in 1984 when I came to my first UMJC conference in St. Louis. He was already a revered leader but I didn’t really get to know him until 1998, when I assumed the leadership of Jewish Voice Broadcasts. Elliot has made a huge impact on Jewish Voice over more than four decades as a member of the Jewish Voice Board and our in-house counsel. He is the longest-serving board member and is the only remaining member who predates my involvement. Jewish Voice would not be the ministry it is today without Elliot’s incredible contribution. In fact, our Messianic movement would not be what it is today without Elliot’s amazing leadership and selfless service.
Jonathan Bernis, President and CEO
Jewish Voice Ministries, International
I first met Elliot in 2010 when I joined the Board of Jewish Voice Ministries. Elliot was serving as our corporate legal representative and corporate secretary. I still have the honor and privilege of serving with him today. Elliot is a great leader and a role model for ethics and integrity. He is a rock that we count on to guide JVMI into the future. He has been instrumental in our support of Messianic ministries worldwide. Elliot has made a great impact on my life, the most recent being the way he handled a serious health issue with steadfast faith and resolve. Congratulations to you, Elliot and Joyce, on 50 years of ministry.
Chairman, JVMI Board
I have known Elliot Klayman since my teenage years. He has always radiated warmth, kindness, intelligence, and seriousness about the rule of God in the world. He inspires others to draw closer to God. It is so appropriate to honor his longevity in Messianic Jewish leadership!
Jeffrey A. Adler
Rabbi, Congregation Shaarey Yeshua, Indianapolis
As a dear friend (and the father of my rabbi), Elliot has always been like a spiritual father to me. He has embraced me and blessed me in immeasurable ways over the years. His words of wisdom are always timely, uplifting, and even prophetic. They have deeply impacted me in ways he could never imagine. His faith and his incredible attitude are deeply inspiring.
Ansel E. Brown
Clinical Assistant Professor
North Carolina Central University School of Law
I first heard of Elliot Klayman in the company of Andrew Shishkoff and Dan Juster. The stories they would tell regarding his role in founding the Union of Messianic Jewish Congregations, and Beth Messiah in Columbus, and in running Roberts Rules in leadership gatherings made him a living legend in my mind. In recent years, my work with Jewish Voice Ministries International enabled me to see Elliot in action. I found out that all the stories I heard were true! And more than that, I found them all to undersell who Elliot is as a Jewish follower of Messiah Yeshua—not only a man of incredible experience and wisdom, but also one of integrity and humility. Well done, Elliot, and many Mazel Tovs to you for your faithful service to our Messiah!
Vice President, Congregation & Leadership Development
Jewish Voice Ministries International
In the spring of 1977, Beth Messiah’s two leaders were leaving and we had no idea who could fill the vacant leadership role. As we waited and prayed, I remember God saying to me, “A man’s ability to lead is only as good as his ability to follow me.” A short time later one of our members mentioned that Elliot Klayman, a Jewish Yeshua-believer and attorney, was moving to Columbus for a one-year visiting professorship at Ohio State. I remember thinking, “No he’s not!” because I knew God had bigger plans for Elliot; and within a few months he and Joyce and baby Seth became part of our little fellowship. Through Elliot’s guidance and vision, we incorporated as Beth Messiah Congregation. Elliot served as our first Congregational Leader and “the Lord added to our number” as more Jewish people discovered their Messiah. It was evident that Elliot led well because of who he followed well. I so appreciated Elliot’s love for the Jewish people and wisdom and counsel then, and now, forty-three years later.
Worship Leader, Trustee
Beth Messiah Congregation 1977–1982
I met Elliot when he moved to San Diego in 2011. Our love for Adonai, Israel, the Hebrew language, and ministry bonded us immediately. We both became elders at Kehilat Ariel in April of 2017, and I leaned on his vast experience to help guide me in ministry work. We play tennis together frequently, but it is those precious moments before and after the game when we sit together and talk about Hashem’s Word, Israel, and Hebrew that have shaped my growth as a Messianic leader.
Zachan, Kehilat Ariel
I met Elliot in 2001 at Beth Messiah. I had become a believer in Yeshua two days before 9/11 and went to Beth Messiah to begin my journey as a Messianic Jew. As fellow lawyers, we had a strong connection already and he patiently taught me so much about my newly-embraced faith through the many opportunities for learning at Beth Messiah. Elliot’s great sense of humor and easy approachability made it easy to ask even the most basic questions about Messianic Judaism, of which I had many. One of my favorite memories was Elliot taking my Praise-aerobics class at Beth Messiah. He never takes himself too seriously! Now, so many years later, as president of Ruach Israel congregation in Needham, MA, and as a board member of MJTI and Camp Or L’Dor, I know that who I am today and what I contribute to our movement had its deepest foundation in the teachings and role model of Elliot Klayman. I am grateful for our paths crossing as I continue to learn not only about Messianic Judaism, but also what it means to live life as a mensch, and to lead others in the ways of Yeshua.
Lawyer and Ruach Israel Board Member
As members of Beth Messiah Columbus, a little over ten years ago, we came to know Elliot and his family very well. He has played such an integral part in shaping a place where our interfaith family could worship together and where my Jewish husband came to faith. Elliot has been a dear friend, brought new clarity to congregants through his teaching and knowledge, and even assisted others with his legal background, all while raising a beautiful family and persevering through major medical setbacks. He is a man of great faith and an example for us all.
Valerie and Cliff Berman & Family
Beth Messiah Congregation, Columbus
I cannot say enough about Elliot and the impact he has made, which stretches to all four corners of the world. His influence, support, and most of all his belief in me over the years, have made all the difference in the critical decisions I’ve had to make both personally and in ministry. With his partnership and encouragement, I was able to attend and graduate from Moody Bible Institute, study abroad at Israel College of the Bible (with him as one of the most fascinating and inspiring teachers on campus), and launch my 501c3 ministry. More recently, a dream came true for me when he officiated my wedding. His investment has empowered me to be a more effective leader and believer in every area of my life. The world is a better place because of his service and sacrifices over these 50 years!
Over a decade ago I was in a van going from Jerusalem up to the Galilee. Elliot was driving, I was riding shotgun, and in the back was a group of college students. All we had to eat was a box of bourekas which were not exactly fresh. Elliot was eating one and, in mid-sentence, said, “Could these possibly have less taste!” Thus, began a monologue which weaved in such topics as baked goods, eating habits in the Roman Empire, and other assorted tales. One of the students in the back said with a big smile, “This is great, it’s like listening to my favorite Jewish uncle!”
Instructor, Israel College of the Bible
I met Elliot in San Diego at Kehilat Ariel. Through hiking, picnics, and the Wednesday night havurah, I got to know Elliot and value his wisdom, humor, and friendship. He truly exhibits the love of Hashem. His teachings are insightful and thought provoking; and I feel blessed to have Elliot’s friendship in my life. Mazel tov on your 50 years of ministry service. You have blessed many.
Kehilat Ariel, Tikkun Olam Havurah
I first met Rabbi Elliot Klayman in the classroom setting of Kehilat Ariel, where the Lord had led my spiritual and theological journey. All I knew of him was that he was a Messianic rabbi from Ohio who had retired here in San Diego. I had no idea the level of his involvement in the Messianic movement, nor that the Lord had plans to make him my mentor and friend. Much has transpired in the few years I have known him: classes, correspondence, many conversations, a UMJC conference, and now seminary. We nearly lost him to kidney failure but the Lord saved him and, in those dark times, prospered a reciprocal relationship of great encouragement and mutual blessing.
Second Year Student, MJTI
Through both word and example, my father has taught me the fundamental necessity of both academia and ministry. His prolific contributions to each have served to demonstrate and declare that the two are inherently intertwined. This lesson learned from my father has steered me as well as many others into a way of life rooted in faith informed by knowledge, wisdom, and a persistent seeking of truth.
Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor