Sojourner’s Truth, Toledo’s African-American newspaper, ran a front page article about our visitor from Uganda.
Rabbi Aaron Kintu Moses: Helping Lead Uganda’s Black Jews to the Promised Land
By Alan Abrams
Sojourner’s Truth Reporter
"Have you heard the story about the two Falashas (the black Jews of Ethiopia) who met in Israel?" Rabbi Barry Leff asks the guests seated around his dinner table last Saturday evening.
Seeing the unanimous response of negative head-shaking, Leff continues with the story. "When one of the Falashas arrived in Israel as a recent emigrant, she met one of the Falashas who had come to Israel in the massive airlifts of the mid-1980’s. ‘How are things here?’ asked the newcomer. The reply she received was, ‘I never knew white people could be Jews. That was my biggest surprise when I came to Israel.’"
One of the guests at the table of Rabbi Leff who laughed the heartiest was Rabbi Aaron Kintu Moses of Uganda. Like the 70,000 Falashas now in Israel, Rabbi Moses is also a black Jew. And so are the 753 members of the Abayudaya, the Jewish community of Uganda of which Moses is the acting spiritual leader. The Abayudaya, whose name in the language of Luganda literally means "People Who Follow the Torah," are Jews solely by choice.
The Abayudaya are not linked historically or generically to other ethnic Jews. But they are devout in following the precepts of the religion. And like Jews throughout history, they have suffered persecution, in this case at the hands of the tyrannical African despot Idi Amin, a villain equal in stature to anyone served up to believers by the Old Testament
To read the complete article, click here.