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Program Description

At the core of our Family and Friends trip to Israel are the parents and relatives who have children attending at The Master’s University IBEX campus. However, we also open the trip to those who may have no direct connection to IBEX or TMU. We invite you to join tour guide, Dr. Michael Grisanti, for a ten day trip to Israel in March 2017. The Family & Friends Program is arranged to make it possible for you to not only visit Israel and explore the historical and biblical sites, but to also be introduced to our IBEX program. Opportunities for several meals and fun times together with the students have been arranged. Some sites of significance on the itinerary include the Sea of Galilee and Galilee region, the Shephelah, the Dead Sea, the Jordan River, and of course, Jerusalem.

Our trip is not a slow moving tourist trip, but a fun and engaging study trip. Our desire is to help each participant better understand the land of the Bible through our time together. We will provide a unique atlas and study notes to help you follow along with the instruction. We will do a fair bit of walking to several sites and ride the bus for other stops.

View Itinerary

Your Host

Dr. Michael Grisanti is professor of Old Testament at The Master’s Seminary. He has been actively involved in ministries around the world, which have brought him to Albania, Chile, Colombia, France, Germany, Honduras, Israel, Italy, Japan, Jordan, New Zealand, Portugal, Romania, Russia, South Africa, Spain, Ukraine, and the United Kingdom. Dr. Grisanti has contributed to theNew International Dictionary of Old Testament Theology and Exegesis, theBaker Illustrated Bible Handbook, and theEerdmans Dictionary of the Bible. He wrote the commentary on Deuteronomy in the revised edition of theExpositor’s Bible Commentaryand was one of three authors forThe World and The Word. Dr. Grisanti loves the land of Israel and has been there over 20 times to study the land and lead study trips. Six of his eight children have studied on the IBEX campus.

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“The trip has transformed our lives and has given us a new, fresh perspective on our daily readings of God’s Word. Though we did not spend a month in Israel and only a week, the places we visited and knowledge we gained was an incredible blessing… Our trip to Israel left us with a yearning to return and as we read God’s Word to be able to visualize the words on paper in our minds!”

Jack Faust, 2015 F&F participant

“We were so thankful to have a tour guide like Dr. Grisanti–his insights, in-depth knowledge of the Bible, and ‘contagious’ love for history exceeded our expectations for the tour… The support material and literature provided laid a solid foundation for seeing and touring each site and has been used countless times since returning home and ‘reliving’ and sorting out all we saw and experienced… Since touring Israel, I noticed that I have been much more aware of and mindful of this year’s Passion Week. I have a deeper understanding and perspective of Christ’s final week on earth, and helpful memories and greater awareness of the events surrounding Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection. My husband John and I are very thankful that we were able to travel with the 2015 Family and Friends tour of Israel and are encouraging others to seriously consider and prefer a tour lead by TMU/TMS.”

Connie Dugas, 2015 F&F participant

10 years ago, our son attended IBEX and my husband attended that Family & Friends trip. The 2017 Family & Friends was my first Israel trip. The 2017 Family & Friends trip was a blessing. I appreciated Dr. Michael Grisanti’s daily devotions/encouragement on our bus ride toward our destinations, and how he associated passages of Scripture to the places where we traveled. We didn’t just visit places, each day we marveled at how God worked in the land, protected His own, and I believe God was honored by what was taught, and the extra bonus was what we saw. Together with the Satellite Bible Atlas, this time helped me understand the significance of the cities we visited. Now when places are mentioned in Scripture, I can visualize some of the places. It was truly a memorable visit to a special place where the OT Patriarchs, our Savior and the early church leaders lived and walked during their days on earth.

Lisa Low, 2017 F&F participant

Both my wife and I had been to Israel decades earlier, but we jumped at the chance to join the Israel study tour while our daughter was there for the semester studying through the IBEX program at The Master’s University. This trip was incredibly rewarding and more meaningful, as the resource material we received in advance and the Bible Atlas we received while on the tour added tremendous depth to our experience. That, and the extensive knowledge and teaching from Dr. Grisanti and our Israeli guide made it a tremendous blessing. We also enjoyed the fellowship from some wonderful like-minded believers we met on the trip. This was way more than just another tourist trip. Thank you for providing such a great privilege to see and travel throughout Israel.

Jay Russell, 2017 F&F participant

Flight Itinerary

DL 44 02 MAR LAX JFK 11:30 am 8:05 pm
DL 468 02 MAR JFK TLV 11:24 pm 5:35 pm arrives 03 MAR
DL 467 10 MAR TLV JFK 11:30 pm 5:13 am arrives 11 MAR
DL 472 11 MAR JFK LAX 8:15 am 11:50 am

Be sure to direct any questions about flights to our travel agent, Shirley Fleig- groupadvantage@me.com

Cost & Payment

Cost and Payment

Airfare Included:

$3,710 per person (credit card) - Secure Payment Portal

$3,575 per person (check)

Land Only*:

$2,025 per person (credit card) - Secure Payment Portal

$1,950 per person (check)

*Refer to the trip application for more information about the land-only price.

The following is included in the price:

  • Airfare to/from LAX*

  • Accommodations in double occupancy rooms**

  • Transportation by private air-conditioned bus

  • Daily breakfasts and dinners throughout the trip

  • Entrance fees to tourist sites and museums

  • Applicable taxes

  • Tips for the bus driver, hotel staff, and Israeli tour guide

*Not included in land-only price.

**There is a $550 additional fee for single room accommodations. The accommodations will be comparable to any good motel in America (3-4 star), with each double room having a private bath.

Dr. Grisanti will be leading the tour (teaching), but the law requires that an Israeli tour guide accompany the group. The trip employs an Israeli tour guide who will offer insight into modern Israeli history, as well as flora and fauna of the land of Israel.

The following is NOT included in the price:

  • Lunches throughout the trip

  • Travel insurance

  • Personal spending (i.e., for souvenirs and snacks)

Travel insurance is highly recommended. See www.travelinsured.com for additional information. If booking online, please indicate agency number 458167 for proper tracking purposes.

Payment schedule:

November 15 $300 deposit due (non-refundable)

January 10 $3,410 balance due ($3,275 - check price)

If you make your full payment after December 13, keep in mind that our IBEX secretary (who handles the payments) will heading home for her Christmas break and won’t arrive back on campus untili the due date for the final payment. We need the payments in by January 10 to give the IBEX secretary and the finance office time to gather those payments together and send checks off for the land and airline side of the trip costs.

So if you make your final payment after December 13, please don’t expect any response saying that your payment was received until she gets back into the IBEX office and can catch up with payments that came in during the break. Also, there is no need to email me because I won’t know anything about what has come through as payments. If you are wondering if your payment was received, feel free to email Kaitlyn after January 10.

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Application Process Descriptions

Download the Trip Application.

1. If possible, please complete the registration form by typing the information. This will help insure that we have accurate information and don’t incorrectly read someone’s handwriting. Print the completed registration form and sign and date at the bottom. Provide your initials for the travel insurance line at the top of page 2 of the form. You can scan the form and email it to ibexoffice@masters.edu or mail it to the IBEX Office (see below address).

2. To pay by credit card, please use our secure payment portal.

3. To pay by check, please make the check payable to The Master’s University and mail or deliver to the IBEX Office.

Kaitlyn Stires IBEX Secretary—Box #16 The Master’s University 21726 Placerita Canyon Road Santa Clarita, CA 91321

4. The Master’s University requires all participants in the Family & Friends program to fill out a release form. Print the completed form and sign and date at the bottom. You can scan the form and email it to ibexoffice@masters.edu or mail it to the IBEX Office.

5. For any questions regarding logistical and payment details, please contact Kaitlyn Stire in the IBEX Office, 661-259-3540 x2616 or ibexoffice@masters.edu. Also, keep in mind that Kaitlyn is a full-time student and only works certain days and hours in the IBEX Office. Allow her time to reply to your email inquiries or phone calls.

6. For questions that Kaitlyn cannot answer, contact Dr. Grisanti at 818-909-5649 or mgrisanti@tms.edu.

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Will I need a passport and visa?

A current passport IS REQUIRED and must not expire until six months after our return date. Please apply immediately, as it may take several weeks to process.* Recent news alerts have stated that passport processing now seems to take more time than usual. Don’t delay in applying for your passport!!*

A visa, however, is not required.

Are there any vaccinations required for this trip?

No vaccinations are required.

I live outside of California. May I travel directly to Israel, or do I need to join the group at LAX?

The IBEX Office will put you in touch with our travel agent if you wish to make other arrangements. You are also free to use your own agent or book your own flight. It is possible to leave from other major airports and connect with the group in New York City (JFK). We generally discourage travel to Israel apart from the group due to potential scheduling conflicts. If you do travel on your own to Israel, land-only cost of the trip is $2,025.00 (or $1,950.00 if paid by check). However, we are not able to arrange ground transportation or hotels for alternative travel arrangements if your flight schedule does not match that of the Friends and Family group or your flight’s arrival in Tel Aviv is delayed for some reason. You will need to BE SURE you arrive before the group and depart after the group departs if you want to ride on the bus from or to the airport. You are also able to arrive a day(s) before or depart after the trip if preferred. If so, you can meet us at the Ben Gurion airport at the time of our arrival or arrange your own transportation to the Moshav where the IBEX campus is located. If needed, Dr. Grisanti will provide the address of the Moshav.

Itinerary details are provided on this website so you can make accurate flight plans if you choose to make your own flight arrangements.

In light of the current conflicts in the Middle East, how safe is it to travel to Israel?

Rest assured that the IBEX Office does not want to put you in harm’s way. We won’t let the IBEX students go to Israel if we are convinced it is not safe, and we won’t pull the trigger on the Friends and Family trip (early January) if we have any concerns. We don’t go near Gaza during our trip. Israel is an amazingly safe place to be. Dr. Grisanti has been to Israel 20 times and has never felt unsafe. Events like those that took place in the summer are not commonplace at all. In the end, we trust God’s providence, and we are in continuous communication with people who know the status of travel in Israel.

Is there a way I can study and prepare for the teaching on this trip?

As the trip roster gets settled, Dr. Grisanti will add several study suggestions to the trip webpage or email them to the group participants directly. These resources will help those interested in laying some groundwork for what we hope to learn during our time together.

What happens if TMU decides to cancel the Family and Friends trip?

This has never happened yet, but if we decide to cancel the F&F trip before the full payment is due (Jan. 10), we will fully refund the deposit or whatever a person has paid. However, after the full payment is made and that money goes to the airline and the land venues, the money is out of our hands. If things get so bad at that point that we make the painful decision to cancel the trip (which I don’t at all expect), we have no access to that money. That is where the travel insurance kicks in. That is why we are encouraging concerned people to buy the travel insurance–making sure they understand the parameters of the policy they choose.