Three Important Decisions To Make Prior To Your Jewish Inter-Faith Marriage

Jewish interfaith marriages can be tricky things to navigate. Some of the best interfaith couples are those that are Jewish-Christian, since Christianity follows many of the Old Testament scriptures and teachings, but other interfaith marriages can work too if you and your partner make three very important decisions prior to the wedding. Here are those important decisions you should ponder and then adhere to the decisions you make as a couple prior to the ceremony.

Choosing How to Attend Pre-Marital Counseling

Most couples in your situation would seek pre-marital counseling, and since most rabbis would expect that you talk to them before you get married, this is not something you can avoid doing if you are not the Jewish person in this relationship. However, you can make the choice to see two spiritual leaders, one of each faith, if you want an even balance of pre-marital counseling from both spiritual belief camps. What you can take away from the advice of both faith leaders are the common denominators (i.e., the advice that is the same or similar as presented by both spiritual leaders, even in separate counseling sessions).

Choosing Which Faith in Which to Raise the Children

This is a very big question and decision for interfaith couples. For example, if you are Catholic and your partner is Jewish, there are numerous religious-based customs that are considered a necessary part of your religions. While you can certainly have your children go through all of them, the process of Catholic catechism and communion as well as the Jewish memorizations needed for a bat mitzvah or bar mitzvah may be quite overwhelming to the kids. Choosing a primary faith in which to raise the children helps them ground their faith in God to start, and as they age, they can choose which faith they would prefer to follow. This decision will probably require some level of compromise to be sure, especially if you both strongly believe in your faith.

Choosing Which Marriage Ceremony Customs to Use

Marriage ceremonies unto themselves have untold variations of customs. As a person of the Jewish faith, or marrying someone who is, there is the Jewish marriage blessing and the breaking of the bottle, which you have to decide if you are going to include. It may be that you have two ceremonies on two different days in two different holy places, or you may combine them for one long ceremony in a public place to avoid offending attendees in the temple, mosque, or other holy place. If you hold your wedding in a very public venue outside the religious venues of your faiths, then you can accommodate and honor as many of the ceremonial customs as you want and cut out just as many too.

For more information, contact Audrey Kaufman or a similar professional in this area.