Ohel Leah Synagogue, Hong Kong

On August 7, 1901, Abraham Jacob Raymond, the senior member of E. D. Sassoon & Co, laid the foundation stone of the new Sassoon-sponsored synagogue in Robinson Road. It was an event attended by a large gathering of the new century’s Hong Kong Jewish community. ‘It now affords me very great pleasure.’ Raymond addressed the gathering, ‘on behalf of Mr Jacob Sassoon, to inform you, ladies and gentlemen, that this synagogue when completed will be dedicated to the Jewish community of Hong Kong in commemoration of his beloved mother Leah, and will be a gift to the Jewish community of Hong Kong – the building from himself and the site from himself and his brothers, Messrs Edward and Meyer Sassoon.’

Ever since its construction, Ohel Leah Synagogue has been the center of Hong Kong Jewry’s religious and social life. In 1995, with the opening of a modern full-service Jewish Community Center adjacent to the center, and with the 1998 restoration of the synagogue to its original grandeur, the Ohel Leah Synagogue Trustees ensured that 70 Robinson Road would remain the hub of Jewish life in Hong Kong for many decades to come. As Jacob Sassoon intended, the synagogue has truly honored and perpetuated his mother Leah’s memory.