A new e-book aims to help identify the descendants of Jews forcibly converted to Christianity by the Spanish Inquisition.
Jerusalem non-profit Shavei Israel released the free 109-page book, entitled "Do You Have Jewish Roots?" or, in Portuguese, "Tiene Usted Raices Judias?" to support its mission of identifying "lost Jews.”
Although the conversions occurred long ago, founder and director of Shavei Israel, Michael Freund, believes that the e-book can make a very large impact on world Jewry.
“We believe that the total number [of descendants] exceeds tens of millions of people," Freund said in an interview: "Their self-discovery as Jews can greatly impact and enrich the international Jewish community… and we are thrilled with the outpouring of interest, especially at a time when we are witnessing a resurgence in European anti-Semitism."
Co-written by Freund and Shavei's organizational director, Rabbi Eliyahu Birnbaum, the e-book is intended to be a practical guide for people in Brazil, Portugal, Spain and beyond to uncover, and discover, their religious heritage.
Readers have downloaded the Spanish version of the book 30,000 times, according to KiryasJoel.com.