Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Intermarried couples try to raise Jewish children

Lisa Shimel, who is not Jewish, celebrated Christmas with her Jewish husband until their first child was born; now they’ve added Chanukah. Deb Morandi works at Jewish Family Services, where she introduces intermarried families to Judaism, though she is not Jewish.

Pat Luftman was a committee co-chair in her son’s Jewish preschool, but her Jewish husband was denied a board position because the couple was intermarried. The Rev. Eleanor Harrison Bregman accompanies her children and Jewish husband to synagogue on Saturday, then goes to church the next day on her own.

A growing number of non-Jewish parents in America who have no plans to convert are raising Jewish children, marrying Jewish spouses, building Jewish homes and playing active roles in the Jewish community. But without plans to join the faith officially, their place in the Jewish community can be a bit complicated.

“My husband has never asked me to convert, and I feel strongly that I won’t, so this is as far as it will go,” Morandi, an active member of her Reform congregation, Temple Etz Chaim in Franklin, Mass., said of her synagogue work.[...]


  1. The Torah forbids intermarriage with 7 nations, plus a few others like Moab, Ammon etc.
    (just like it forbids certain species of birds to eat).
    Hence, intermarriage with other nations is not d'Oraita (from the Torah), just like all other birds are permitted to eat.

    I am being deliberately controversial.

    Today, if someone needs to prove their Jewishness, the Bet Din will look at their maternal line, since their paternal does not really make any difference.

    Guess what Ezra did? Ezra 2:
    59 And these were they that went up from Tel-melah, Tel-harsa, Cherub, Addan, and Immer; but they could not tell their fathers' houses, and their seed, whether they were of Israel:

    Was Ezra a reform Sofer?


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