A Mover and Shaker

We’re thrilled that our friend Elana MacGilpin, one of our Parenting Blog regulars, was recognized by the Connecticut Jewish Ledger as one of their 2011 Movers and Shakers! The article notes that Elana is best known for is coordinating outreach programs specifically for interfaith families and couples. Elana is quoted as saying, “One of the

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Remembering Newt Becker

As you can imagine, there have been a lot of ups and downs for me since starting InterfaithFamily.com, Inc. ten years ago. I have a very distinct memory of one of the high points. Although I’m not completely certain where it happened – I believe it was at the then-United Jewish Communities General Assembly in

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Reflecting on December 2011

I was interviewed by a major city’s Jewish newspaper this week. The reporter asked if it had gotten “easier” for interfaith couples over the past ten years since InterfaithFamily got started. I said I thought there was more acceptance among parents of young adults who are intermarrying. But there are still what I call “eternal”

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An Historic Advance by the UJA Federation of New York

Last week the UJA-Federation of New York released what could be the most important report ever written for the field of engaging interfaith families in Jewish life and community. The report, of the Federation’s Task Force on Welcoming Interfaith Families, recognizes that there is potential for Jewish engagement among interfaith families that is not being

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Survey Again Says: IFF Has Impact!

At IFF we are always interested in who our users are, and in what they are looking for and whether they find it with us. We’re especially interested in our impact, and so are our funders and Jewish professionals with whom we seek to work: are we changing the attitudes and behaviors of people in

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Interfaith Families Prefer Programs Marketed as “For Interfaith Families”

At InterfaithFamily.com we’ve always believed that programs designed and marketed explicitly as “for interfaith families” — sometimes called “targeted” programs — are very effective in engaging interfaith families in Jewish life and community. We’ve argued that the Boston Jewish community sees 60% of interfaith families raising their children as Jews in part because it is

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Remembering Leonard Wasserman

One of my heroes died last week, on October 7, erev Yom Kippur. Leonard Wasserman was unique in my experience. He is the only Jewish lay leader I’ve ever known who became passionate about engaging interfaith families in Jewish life and then created an organization that works to do just that – Interfaithways. I first

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Choosing Life in the New Year, Part 2

I just read my friend Julie Wiener’s latest blog post put up just before Yom Kippur, Bad Day at the Mikveh, Good Day at the Beach. I usually agree with Julie but I’m not sure in this case. Jessica Langer-Sousa, a Jewish woman who was intermarrying, wrote in the  Huffington Post that she was rebuffed

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Choosing Life in the New Year

When I was in sixth grade I won my Hebrew school’s essay contest by writing that Yom Kippur was my favorite Jewish  holiday. I figured — correctly, because I won — what kid would choose Yom Kippur? But Yom Kippur was and still is my favorite holiday and it was a good one for me.

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New Year, New Decade

InterfaithFamily.com, Inc. was incorporated on October 4, 2001 – almost exactly ten years ago. Looking back – appropriate during this High Holiday period – it was an expression of hope. Hope that we could do work that effectively would support interfaith families to find value and meaning in engaging in Jewish life, and influence Jewish

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