Rabbis and Priests Join Forces to Work Against Intermarriage

An unusual Catholic-Jewish session on intermarriage has produced a joint statement “urging the deterrence” of such unions.

In a statement issued last week, 83 rabbis and priests also recommended that clergy foster discussion between couples of different faiths as they prepare for marriage, “making it clear that syncretism will not be possible and that very painful decisions may have to be made regarding family life.”

Participants in the consultation also recommended that an informal committee be established to regularly discuss common concerns about intermarriage.

Jews who marry Christians disproportionately marry Catholics, according to sociologist Egon Mayer, who did not participate in the gathering.

Catholic-Jewish marriages are so common, he said, because members of both religious groups tend to live in the same geographic areas.

The consultation was organized by the Interreligious Information Center, the New York Catholic Archdiocese and the New York regional associations of Reform and Conservative rabbis.

NEXT STORY