Churachandpur, India - Lost Tribe Of Bnei Menashe In Northeastern India Lights Candles To Celebrate Chanukah
Churachandpur, India - Hundreds of members of the Bnei Menashe community from across northeastern India gathered yesterday in the town of Churachandpur in the Indian state of Manipur to celebrate Chanukah and light the traditional candles.
“The story of the Maccabees’ heroic determination to preserve their Jewish identity under the most trying of circumstances is one that resonates very strongly with the Bnei Menashe, for they too have made enormous efforts down through the centuries to cling to their faith and that of their ancestors,” said Shavei Israel Chairman and Founder Michael Freund. “Even in far-off Manipur, the flame of Jewish survival continues to burn brightly.”
The Bnei Menashe are descendants of the tribe of Manasseh, one of the Ten Lost Tribes exiled from the Land of Israel more than 2,700 years ago by the Assyrian empire. So far, some 3,000 Bnei Menashe have made aliyah thanks to Shavei Israel, and another 7,000 are still in India waiting for the chance to return home to Zion.
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