The Associated Press and Officiation

Associated Press religion writer Rachel Zoll recently wrote an article about the difficulties interfaith couples can face trying to find a rabbi to officiate at their wedding. She gives examples of rabbis whose status as rabbis is questionable, who do not respect Jewish tradition in the weddings they conduct, and who charge unreasonable fees for

Read the Rest »

An Unnoticed Outreach Hero

Rabbi Abraham J. Klausner died on June 28. The obituaries in the Jewish press, including JTA and the Jerusalem Post, described how Rabbi Klausner, the leader of a Reform synagogue in Yonkers, N.Y., for 25 years, was the first Jewish chaplain in the US Army to enter Dachau and had been a leading advocate for

Read the Rest »

Enough Is Enough

April 2007 (with Micah Sachs) One of the most uplifting parts of the Passover seder is when we sing “Dayenu.” Each verse speaks to a different gift that God gave the Jewish people, followed by the celebratory chorus “Dayenu”–“it would have been enough.” If God had only allowed us to leave Egypt, goes the first

Read the Rest »

Don’t Write Off the Intermarried: A Case for Community Outreach

February 12, 2007 (with Micah Sachs) With a response from Steven M. Cohen Charles Dickens’ classic A Tale of Two Cities begins with the famous opening line: “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” Sociologist Steven Cohen’s new study on intermarriage has a similar title, but a different spirit. Ignoring

Read the Rest »

“Keeping the Faith”

Yesterday’s Boston Sunday Globe magazine “Coupling” column by Alison Lobron provides an illuminating perspective on how young adult Jews think about interdating and intermarriage. Alison describes herself as a “not-very-active Jew” who had no Bat Mitzvah, no Hebrew lessons, and no family tradition of Jewish holidays. After a two-year relationship with a “not-very-active Protestant” on

Read the Rest »

Two Friends

We had a pretty big week at InterfaithFamily.com last week. As we’ve already mentioned, it’s our fifth anniversary as an independent organization, and the 200th issue of our Web Magazine, and we had great coverage in the New York Jewish Week and the Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles. We launched our new User Survey

Read the Rest »

“Jewish parent + Christian parent = Jewish kids”

Amy Klein has a terrific article in the current edition of the Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles that features InterfaithFamily.com and some of our writers. The title, “Jewish parent + Christian parent = Jewish kids,” expresses our organization’s mission better than we’ve been able to do ourselves! Along with Julie Wiener’s (New York) Jewish

Read the Rest »

The Critics Respond to the Boston Survey

Steven M. Cohen, one of the leading critics of outreach, has an op-ed on the results of the recent demographic study of Boston’s Jewish community in the current issue of the Forward, co-signed by demographers Jack Ukeles and Ron Miller. Cohen et al first question whether the 60% figure for interfaith families raising their children

Read the Rest »

Michael Richards, Yossi Beilin and Who’s Jewish?

There’s been an interesting confluence of events over the past several weeks that raise the question, “Who’s Jewish?” First there was the media firestorm about comedian Michael Richards, the beloved Kramer from the TV show Seinfeld, having made racist comments at an LA comedy club. Other than being horrified as I assume most others were,

Read the Rest »

You Think Interfaith Issues Are Only for the Living?

Yesterday I attended a fascinating meeting of the Interfaith Collaborative–the group of professionals who conduct outreach to interfaith couples and families in the Greater Boston area and meet on a regular basis. This session, the first of its kind for the group, involved presentations by representatives of two Jewish cemeteries. If you thought that interfaith

Read the Rest »