At JewBelong we’re obsessed, in a good way, with making sure that everyone feels welcome in the Jewish community. The best way to do this is, well, just say it. And don’t worry, we even have the words for you. The blessings below are for those who converted, those whose partner isn’t Jewish, those who just think Judaism is cool, and of course, Maggie O’Connor, who has been dating your son, Josh for three years and it looks like things are getting serious.
We also have snacks. Ruth, as in The Book Of, as in the great-grandmother of King David, was part of an interfaith marriage. To honor the growing diversity of the Jewish people, and to give thanks to our badass matriarch for leading the way, we created Ruth’s Mix to go with the blessings. It’s a combination of almonds, raisins and chocolate chips. The idea is that each of these ingredients is good on its own, but when mixed together, they’re even better. If you include Ruth’s Mix (you don’t have to but it’s a crowd-pleaser), take a bit before reading the blessing of your choice out loud:
Blessing Number One
May everyone who shares in a Jewish life feel welcomed and integrated. We are deeply grateful to those who provide love and support to their Jewish partners and families by creating a home that includes Judaism. We offer special thanks to those who are raising their sons and daughters with Jewish identity. We are a very small people and history has made us smaller. Our children mean hope, life and future. We pray with all of our hearts that the gifts and blessings you have given to your family, to the community, and to the Jewish People will come back to you and fill your life with joy and fulfillment.
Adapted from Rabbi Janet Marder
Blessing Number Two
The non-Jews in the Jewish community are a crucial, beautiful and diverse group of people. Some are living a Jewish life in virtually all respects. Some are devoutly committed to another faith. Some do not define themselves as religious at all. We thank you for your decision to cast your lot with the Jewish people and for the love and support you give to your Jewish partners and family. We also offer our deepest thanks to those of you who are parents and who are raising your sons and daughters as Jews. We are a very small people and history has made us smaller. Every Jewish child is especially precious. Our children mean hope, life and future. With all our hearts, we want to thank you for this gift. We pray with all of our hearts that the gifts and blessings you have given to your family, to the community, and to the Jewish People will come back to you and fill your life with joy and fulfillment.
Adapted from Rabbi Janet Marder
Blessing Number Three
Thank you for being part of the Jewish people. Whether you have tried your hand at making a Passover Seder, make shabbat dinner each week, or light a menorah with the scent of the Christmas tree in the air, you are an important part of the Jewish people. We are a small group and history has made us smaller. We will not take your commitment to the Jewish people for granted. Your presence honors us and makes us stronger and wiser.