Jewish-China connection feted
Updated: 2014-06-02 11:38
By Hu Haidan in New York (China Daily USA)
Children's Day used as occasion to recognize 2,000 years of heritage
The Chinese Consulate General in New York and the Appeal of Conscience Foundation co-hosted an Open House to celebrate Children' Day at the Chinese Consulate General on May 30.
More than 70 local Jewish students and faculty members from Park East Day School were invited to the event.
Among the dignitaries present were Sun Guoxiang, Chinese consul general in New York; Wang Min, wife of ambassador Sun; Rabbi Arthur Schneier, founder and president of the Appeal of Conscience Foundation; and Zhang Meifang, deputy consul general in New York.
Wang wished students a happy and joyful Children's Day on behalf of the Chinese consulate.
She said the 2,000-year relationship between the Chinese and Jewish people has left behind many touching and unforgettable stories, which have inspired and strengthened the friendship.
"Both Chinese and Jewish people enjoy a long-standing history and time-honored friendship. Both of our civilizations have contributed greatly to the advancement of human history," she said. "Yet both have suffered a lot from the atrocities of war."
"One of the best known stories of our friendly relations was during WWII. When the Jewish were inhumanely treated in Europe, the Chinese people opened their arms and provided sanctuary.
At the height of the Japanese invasion of China during the 1940s, Shanghai selflessly took in more than 30,000 Jewish refugees. Most of them survived the war, and became great friends of the Chinese people and the Shanghainese in particular," Wang added.
Schneier said the torch of the friendship would be passed down to the younger generation.
"The future of China-US relations belongs to you," he said.
During the Open House, students from Park East Day School staged performances.
Jewish children also participated in contests themed on China, racing to be the first to answer each question. Sun, Wang and Schneier jointly gave out awards to the winners.
At the close of the event, two student representatives from Park East Day School presented flowers to Sun and Wang, expressing their thanks for inviting them into the Chinese Consulate.
"We had an unforgettable Children's Day," one of the student representatives said.
In the past the Chinese Consulate General in New York has hosted open houses for celebrating Children's Day for American families who have adopted Chinese children and those who are studying Chinese.
Sun Guoxiang (left), Chinese consul general in New York, and Rabbi Schneier, founder and president of the Appeal of Conscience Foundation, pose for a photo at Chinese Consulate General in New York on May 30. Hu Haidan / China Daily
(China Daily USA 06/02/2014 page2)