March 12, 2008

18 B'nei Menashe couples marry in Israel

Via WND:

Eighteen couples from a group of hundreds who recently moved to Israel from India believing they are one of the "lost tribes" of Israel have been married in a massive, emotional ceremony, fulfilling for many a lifelong dream of starting a life in what they consider their homeland.

"For the first time, 18 B'nei Menashe couples – equal to chai ['life' in Hebrew numerical equivalent] – married in a joint ceremony under the wedding canopy in Jerusalem. This symbolizes their successful absorption into Jewish and Israeli society, and we wish the couples a lot of joy and success," said Michael Freund, chairman of Shavei Israel, a Jerusalem-based immigrant organization working with the "lost" Jews.

The tribe lives in the two Indian states of Mizoram and Manipur, to which they claim to have been exiled from Israel more than 2,700 years ago by the Assyrian empire.