Kaifeng Jews in Israel

This YouTube video is about the Chinese descendents of the Kaifeng Jews returning to Israel.  Three Chinese women living in Israel wait at the airport for their arrival.  Three-and-a-half years earlier, these women went through a similar experience when they arrived from China.

All of the Chinese, those arriving and those already in Israel, are descendents of the Jewish community in Kaifeng, China, which existed for a thousand years.

Michael Freund, Chairman of Shavei Israel, talks about the Kaifeng Jews and how they lost their identity through assimilation.   What’s left of that Chinese Jewish community has made great efforts to hold onto their Jewish identity.  Now, many of the Kaifeng Jewish descendents want to reconnect with their Jewish roots.

The Shavei organization has been guiding and supporting the descendents of the Kaifeng’s Jewish community for the last few years. The Kaifeng Jews have traveled to Israel to study Hebrew and the Jewish culture. After arriving, the Kaifeng Jews went straight from the airport to the Western Wall.

See The Kaifeng Jews

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. 

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2 Responses to Kaifeng Jews in Israel

  1. NN says:

    They have no relatives from Israel, but they feel they are home there? I find this little strange. But I guess religion has a strong impact on people.

    • The Jewish people have maintained strong bonds for centures. But, allowing these Chinese with Jewish roots to travel to Israel and possibly gain a college education might be another reason.

      In China, the competition is fierce to get into a university and about 15% of those elligble make it–there isn’t enough room for more. Childen from families with money may go to America or Eurpoe to attend exensive universities there.

      Those Chinese Jewish people who traveled to Israel, may have gone for the chance to learn without the need to have that financial backing. The Jews are a culture that also values education and hard work and family–something many cultures in the modern world (like America) appear to be losing.

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