Bnai Keshet is holding two events honoring social justice in the coming week.

On Saturday morning, June 3, Steve Ellmann will speak about South Africa’s late Chief Justice, Arthur Chaskalson, and what role his Jewishness may have played in his opposition to apartheid at Bnai Keshet’s Kaplan Minyan. The Kaplan Minyan, which meets in the Red Gables historic house across the parking lot from the synagogue’s main building, at 99 South Fullerton Ave., begins at 10:30 a.m.

Ellmann is the Martin Professor of Law at New York Law School, where he has taught since 1992. He taught with Chaskalson in 1987 at Columbia Law School and visited him in South Africa in 1988. After Chaskalson’s death in 2012, the family invited Ellmann to write his biography, to be titled, “For Justice: The Life of Arthur Chaskalson.”

On Tuesday, June 6, at 6 p.m., Bnai Keshet will hold a candlelight vigil on the corner of Church Street and Bloomfield Ave., to bear witness to the turning away of passengers on the transatlantic liner St. Louis in 1939. More than over 900 mostly Jewish refugees fleeing the Third Reich were not allowed into the US. Instead, they were sent ack to Germany, where they were murdered in the Holocaust.

The candlelight gathering will simultaneously stand with today’s refugees. For more information, call Bnai Keshet at 973-746-4889 or visit