Shavei Israel publishes first ‘birkon’ in Chinese
The Kaifeng Jews are an ancient Jewish community with a rich and dramatic history. Today more and more of their descendants are interested in learning about their cultural and spiritual heritage. As part of its efforts to preserve this community and strengthen its ties with Judaism and the Jewish state, Shavei Israel published the first birkon (blessing book) in Mandarin Chinese. The birkon includes Shabbat kiddush, blessings and songs and will help Chinese-speaking Jewish communities keep their connection with Jewish tradition.
The introductions to the birkon were prepared by Shavei Israel’s Chairman and Founder, Michael Freund, and Rabbi Chanoch Avitzedek and focus on the meaning and importance of keeping the Sabbath. The translation to Chinese was made by Shavei’s coordinator for the Kaifeng Jews, Eran Barzilay, with the help of those representatives of the community who underwent the process of formal conversion and successfully made Aliyah to Israel.
If you’re a Chinese-speaker and you’d like to have a copy of your own, you can place your order in Shavei’s bookstore.