Save the date for another wonderful evening of Dinner and a Movie, sponsored by the Sisterhood! On Sunday, January 26, the Sisterhood will be showing the film Minyan in Kaifeng: A Modern Journey to an Ancient Chinese Jewish Communit, with an introduction by current Temple Emunah member Matthew Stephenson, starting at 5:00 PM.
In 1997-1998, Matthew Stephenson spent the year after his college graduation studying in Beijing. During that time he became an active member of Kehillat Beijing, a small but vibrant community of Jewish expats. The history of Jews in China dates back at least eight centuries, when a group of Sephardic Jews traveled across the Silk Road and settled in Kaifeng, then the capital of the Chinese empire. By the early 20th century the community had all but disappeared. Eager to explore more of this little-known but fascinating strand of Jewish history, a group of Kehillat Beijing members, led by two young amateur filmmakers, set out to visit Kaifeng, hold the first Shabbat minyan in Kaifeng in close to a century, and meet some of the descendants of the Kaifeng Jews. The documentary “Minyan in Kaifeng” is the product of this expedition. Matthew is currently the Eli Goldston Professor of Law at Harvard Law School and will be sharing memories and reflections after the screening of the documentary.