A Prayer for Conversos

The following pray for Conversos was penned by Rabbi Shelomo Alkabetz in 1536. Alkabetz was a rabbi and kabbalist best remembered for his writing the hymn titled Lecha Dodi which forms part of the Friday evening service called Kabbalat Shabbat.

“If there be among them those who abandoned their honor [converted] on a better day and prayed to a strange god, You alone know the heart of man, You know his hurt and the pain of his heart…In distress they called upon You and some sanctified Your name in auto-da-fes…Nonetheless they kept Your Torah, neither leaving nor abandoning it…Now their spirit moves them to go up to Mt. Sion, the L-RD’s mountain, to delight in its stones and to rebuild the dust of its ruins. All assemble to come to You; they take their lives in their hands and set forth by sea…for the Land.”1

  1. David Shelomo Alfassa, The Sephardic ‘Anousim’: Anousim, Crypto-Jews, and Marranos, (New York, Alfassa: 2010), p. 147
About rambam442013 108 Articles
Rabbi Juan Bejarano-Gutierrez is a graduate of the University of Texas at Dallas where he earned a bachelor of science in electrical engineering. He studied at the Siegal College of Judaic Studies in Cleveland and received a Master of Arts Degree with Distinction in Judaic Studies. He completed his doctoral studies at the Spertus Institute of Jewish Learning and Leadership in Chicago in 2015. His doctoral dissertation is titled “Complex Identities: Christian and Jewish Attitudes Towards Conversos” and was accepted in September 2015. He also studied at the American Seminary for Contemporary Judaism and received rabbinic ordination in 2011 from Yeshiva Mesilat Yesharim.