Conversion Essay Judaism

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This family was an interfaith one, and the bar mitzvah’s father – a non-Jew – was so invested with the idea of Jewish continuity that he traveled halfway across the globe so his son could participate in a ritual that countless other Jews have celebrated through the millennia. There are countless families in which one parent has not converted to Judaism but is still committed to raising a child in a loving Jewish home.Peretz’s horrible rhetoric is utterly distasteful to Jews who found love with a non-Jewish partner or who express their Judaism in ways that differ from Orthodoxy.Those Jews do not make their love commitments in an effort to hurt Judaism.Had it not been for Jewish leaders and communities who embraced me so warmly, I would not have cultivated such a passionate Jewish identity, nor would I have entered a lifelong commitment to Jewish communal service.Rather than shun interfaith families, let’s celebrate the unique contributions they bring to Jewish life, lest we lose those parents or their children from the Jewish community.More and more I see interfaith families who are passionate about finding a place in the broader Jewish community.Our communal markers of identity need not cast people into the simple binary of “Jew” or “non-Jew” when the reality is more of a spectrum.Still, too many of my Orthodox compatriots believe there is a “war” against intermarriage and that rejecting interfaith families from participation in Jewish life will deter further intermarriage.With deepest respect, I believe this strategy is misguided.Ethnic Judaism typically operates under a fear mentality of survival, whereas values Judaism prioritizes actualizing our moral mission trusting that surviving followings thrive.Those of us committed to halacha must not impose that upon others or use this holy instrument to as inclusive and welcoming as possible ensures that Jewish wisdom has its best chance of being a transformative moral and spiritual vehicle in a family’s life.

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