Aug 14 13 Av Torah Portion. We raised our children in a home that observed all the major Jewish holidays. I made our children aware of their culture and heritage. Our son was bar mitzvahed and attended Hebrew school for five years.
When I became a Jew by choice, it was for no other reason than the fact that I felt a calling: I had a Jewish soul. I embarked on the long and arduous journey of becoming Jewish through a Conservative conversion, only to discover later that neither my son nor I was considered Jewish according to strict religious law, as I had not converted through the Orthodox movement. To become an Orthodox Jew requires a lot of study, commitment, sacrifice and tenacity. It took me nearly two years to complete my Orthodox conversion. But I did it. I started my Orthodox conversion process when I was 44, and most people in this movement marry early and stay married for many, many years. Still, I was determined to become an Orthodox Jew and to raise my son Orthodox.
I have a daughter who was dating a non-Jewish guy. In order to be with him and out of our disapproving sight she moved far away. Now she wants to come back home. We are willing to accept her, but not if she is willing to hold on emotionally to this young man. We stand firm in that if he is not a Jew then we can't see her being with him.
Well, the issue is complicated. Judges and mayors do not have the power to marry you. You need your local rabbi, priest or qadi. The only courts which are allowed to perform marriages in Israel are the religious courts. A rabbinical court can marry Jews well, some of them; see below for more.