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Conversion to Judaism Growing Among Persons Seeking Intermarriage

March 26, 1964
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Evidence of a growing interest in conversion to Judaism “by prospective spouses of Jews” has been reported by the chairman of a Chicago project to provide classes for prospective converts under Conservative auspices.

Rabbi Nathan Levinson said that the requests of many such would-be converts had prompted the Chicago region of the Rabbinical Assembly of America to start the classes which are being held at the College for Jewish Studies. He said that the prospective converts are accompanied by their future spouses, thus making it possible for both “to more fully understand the precepts of Judaism.”

Rabbi Harold I. Stern of Skokie, one of the instructors, said that he had come to the conclusion that the number of intermarriages in which the ceremony is performed by a Christian clergyman “is on the decline.” He added that this proved the pessimists were wrong “who are writing off the Jewish community as inevitably assimilating completely into the non-Jewish environment.”

He said that the fact that non-Jews were willing to accept Judaism and to bring up their children as Jews was “a reflection of the increased concern of our Jewish people for the survival of our ancestral faith.”

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