Faiths come together in joy

Rabbi Don Goldstein and his wife, Jackie at Shoresh David Messianic Synagogue in Valrico.

Brandon News & Tribune report:

Members of the newest Shoresh David Messianic Synagogue come from various faith backgrounds.

Many live in interfaith families and seek common ground.

About a third of the congregation is Jewish.

They believe Yeshua, the Hebrew name of Jesus, is the long-awaited Messiah.

The Brandon temple, which opened in April, is the third offshoot of the Tampa-based Shoresh David Messianic Synagogue. The others are in Lakeland and Wesley Chapel.

Weekly services attract about 60 participants, said Rabbi Don Goldstein, of Valrico.

Services take place from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Friday nights and are open to anyone. Traditional Jewish prayers, lively music, congregational singing and Davidic dancing are followed by a relaxed time of visiting and dialogue.

Services can be an intersection of faith for couples from different backgrounds, said Goldstein. A Jewish person can recognize what’s happening through the familiar traditions, while a Christian understands the message.

Brandon residents Rabbi Ron Goldberg and his wife, Vidhyotma “Vinu” Singh Goldberg, serve as assistants to Rabbi Don Goldstein and his wife, Jackie Goldstein.

Vinu Goldberg was raised in a Hindu family. All her life, she longed to know and be known by the creator, she said.

She gradually awakened to a faith in Jesus as Messiah and now enjoys what she calls a personal relationship with God.

After Goldberg, who was raised in a Jewish family, spoke at a church she attended in New York state, they met, married and then began to love each other.

After some searching, Goldberg accepted Jesus as the Messiah; but considering Jesus’ first followers were Jewish, he concluded there was no need to renounce Judaism to follow Jesus. Eventually, he was drawn to the ministry.

He found a home in a Messianic Jewish congregation and became a rabbi. He has been teaching ever since in synagogues, at churches and on a bilingual radio show, La Voz del Mesías (The Messiah’s Voice), which runs from 9 to 9:30 p.m. Sundays at

Three years ago, the Goldbergs moved their five children to Tampa, following a call to serve at Shoresh David.

Two years ago, they moved to Brandon and now help the Goldsteins with the new synagogue.