A Mixed or (Mixed-Up) Marriage

She is healthy. She eats yams.
He is healthy. He loves clams.
She cooks chicken covered with jam.
He adds honey when he bakes his ham.
She tests her chicken with a fork
He tests nothing when he cooks his pork.
They have twins whom they love a lot
One is Jewish and one is not.
They live together as husband and wife
Married together in a beautiful life.
When she gets angry she yells “vay iz mir”
When he’s upset he grabs a beer.
She is Jewish, can’t you tell
He’s a Catholic going to hell.
But their mixed marriage is not so wrong
And through thick and thin they get along.
I write this in honor of two dear friends, joined together in a mixed marriage for 27 years. They do not quarrel about their religious differences.
In December she lights Chanukah candles and he decorates a Christmas tree. The twins get gifts on the different holidays of their different faiths. One goes to synagogue with his mother and the other goes to church with his father.

She loves living in Tel-Aviv while he prefers to live in Jaffa near the beach. They share a number of friends together, mostly Jewish than non-Jewish but there has never been conflict in the long years of their marriage.

They used to ask me my opinion about mixed marriages but after I gave them my opinion they stopped asking me.

I am an observant Jew and mixed marriages are prohibited in Judaism unless one of the couple converts to Judaism. In the case of a mixed marriage I have strong opposition. It is similar to my opinion of same sex marriages with a major difference.

As I have written in previous articIes, I have no objection to same sex men and women who love one another and who want to live together sharing life and love. I can bless them and wish them happiness.

But on the issue of an official same sex marriage I am very much opposed. Not because of different religions but because it is a strict violation of Jewish marital law.

The Hebrew word for marriage is”kiddushin”: which means holiness and faithfulness to Jewish law and tradition. Living together as an unmarried loving couple is perfectly acceptable to me. A formal wedding ceremony is not.

Each of us holds opinions widely separate from one another. The important thing is to respect others who may differ from us.

So while I do not accept a mixed marriage nor a same sex marriage I have no opposition to one who eats ham, provided he/she is of the Christian faith living and sharing a loving life with a Jewish partner who does not eat ham.

Agree or not, I am a Jew. The decision is yours. I leave it to you.

You may laugh or you may yell. I believe in heaven but I don’t believe in hell.

I don’t know which of the two will be my final destiny. But if you can be patient…. Wait.

When I get there I’ll let you know where I am ! Savlanut. Patience is said to be a virtue.

About the Author
Esor Ben-Sorek is a retired professor of Hebrew, Biblical literature & history of Israel. Conversant in 8 languages: Hebrew, Yiddish, English, French, German, Spanish, Polish & Dutch. Very proud of being an Israeli citizen. A follower of Trumpeldor & Jabotinsky & Begin.
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