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punkrockworld's avatar

Religion difference between husband and wife?

Asked by punkrockworld (944 points ) October 9th, 2008

Lets say I’m christian and my husband is Jewish, what problems will we face ?

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34 Answers

shadling21's avatar

Haven’t you already faced the problem of marriage? I mean, that’s the major point when religion gets brought up – which establishment do you hold the ceremony in?

It seems to me that if you’re with someone you love, religion won’t matter, so you won’t face problems with each other. If your families both support the marriage, there won’t be arguments from that area either. The religious communities may, but that’s not usually an issue nowadays.

If you’ve made it this far, then I would say that you’ve probably passed the greatest obstacle. I could be wrong, though. I’m only an unmarried youngster.

punkrockworld's avatar

I’m unmarried, I just dated a few Jewish guys and it seems as if they keep in mind they are going to marry a jewish girl anyway.
So i always end up feeling hurt..

La_chica_gomela's avatar

Shadling, with great respect, I must disagree. Marriage, in my opinion, is only the first step. It’s like when you move to L.A. It’s really hard, but it doesn’t make you a star. You still have to work your butt off.

Punkrock, I’m sorry you ended up feeling hurt. I think we’ve all ended up feeling like that after failed relationships.

I would say that it’s not impossible for Jews and Christians to marry. Half of the families in my synagogue growing up were interfaith (not necessarily Christian).

To answer your question specifically, I think many issues around how to raise children are among the most difficult, but of course, that’s my perspective since my parents were interfaith.

punkrockworld's avatar

So you believe that most jewish boys want to marry a jewish girl?

augustlan's avatar

I think it depends…are we talking actual religious Christians and Jews, or merely cultural Christians and Jews? Problems between cultural differences are much easier to overcome, while religious differences can be a deal-breaker. I am a lapsed Christian, my ex-husband was a cultural Jew. For the most part, we didn’t face many problems, and the few we did we were able to overcome. The main thing was that I did not have my children christened, and I did not say “In Jesus’ name, amen” at the end of grace.

punkrockworld's avatar

im talkin about a not so religious christian but a very religious jew

La_chica_gomela's avatar

Punkrock, No, I wouldn’t say that. I cannot even begin to generalize what “most jewish boys” want. I can talk about what most jewish guys are looking for within different denominations.

-I would say almost all orthodox jews want to marry within their religion, but they wouldn’t even date a non-orthodox, not even me.
-Conservative, could go either way, I would say it depends on the individual.
-Reform, for probably more than half, religion does not really enter the equation at all. They are going to date whoever they think is cool, interesting, pretty, whatever, and then they’re going to marry the girl they fall in love with, and if she happens to be jewish, then he probably met her at hillel.

now, to tell you what percentage of jews fall into each denomination? i could guess, but i really don’t know. i would say—orthodox, probably 10–20% of jews, and you’ll never meet them anyway. i’m not really sure if conservative or reform is bigger, but i’m going to guess reform, and it’s probably pretty close to even. and then there are ‘cultural jews’ as augustlan pointed out, if you force them to chose a denomination, they’ll usually go with reform.

so if you can sort out all my funky math, i hope it’ll help you find the answer you’re looking for.

La_chica_gomela's avatar

punkrock, is this someone in particular?

if you told me their denomination or some aspects of their practice, i could make an educated guess, but what may seem “very religious” to you, may seem “not so much” to me, or visa versa.

punkrockworld's avatar

thnx and yes we can say its about someone in particular..

La_chica_gomela's avatar

Okay, well, what’s his denomination?

Does he attend services regularly? Did he fast today?

punkrockworld's avatar

yes he did.. he doesnt go to services, only the important ones I guess.
Its more his parents that are religious but im sure he takes after them.

La_chica_gomela's avatar

So what denomination is he? That’s really the most important question. And how old roughly, are each of you?

Just a note: to some people, they’re all important. ;-)

punkrockworld's avatar

Im not sure what branch of judaism he is.. i dont even get the difference because myself, Im not Jewish. We are both 19 years old.

augustlan's avatar

If he fasted, he’s got to be at least reform, don’t you think La Chica? Cultural Jews pretty much celebrate Passover and Hannukah, but that’s about it.

La_chica_gomela's avatar

Augustlan, it depends on your definition, really. the line between ‘reform’ and ‘cultural’ is more like a vast expanse, to me. as i said before, most ‘cultural’ jews, when pressed, will say they’re reform.

he is only 19 too. if you live at home you often do what your parents expect you to do. i know a lot of jews in college who always fasted until freshmen year, and then they didn’t even miss class on yom kippor.

Punkrock, from the information i have right now, i would say don’t give up on dating this guy just because you’re different religions. if you like him and he likes you, you can figure it out! maybe you’ll split up in the end, but if you do, then maybe you would have anyway. if you have fun and you share something special with him, then that’s what really counts.

punkrockworld's avatar

thank you, you’ve all been a great help

punkrockworld's avatar

could it help if i knew he spoke hebrew or farsi

La_chica_gomela's avatar

oh, sorry i misunderstood. i meant, does he?

Judi's avatar

It depends on how important faith is to the parties involved.

thegodfather's avatar

I would expect at some point in the relationship that the religious difference would necessarily come up and pose a strain on the relationship in some way. The best way to deal with strains is to prepare for them. Start now to discuss the other’s religious background and really try to identify what about their experience makes them who they are. If the two of you have that same fundamental background, then I think that ought to be discussed in detail and in the open with the question in mind, will the tertiaries of our differing faiths pose a problem at all? For instance, a deep love of Jesus Christ may be similar to a Jew’s deep love for the God of Abraham, but how much does communion matter? Can the Christian in this situation part with it?

Lots of questions that stem out from here, but I think it ought to start with a constructive discussion on the most fundamental beliefs and how they contribute to the essence and life experience of each person involved, and then see how much they differ or not.

cooksalot's avatar

I believe there are a few celebs out there that grew up with this in their family. I“m thinking Bill Maher. Am I right? He said that his mom was Catholic, and his dad Jewish. They all went to mass on Sunday and his dad stayed home.

Rosy_cloud's avatar

i have face this problem. fall in love with a difference religion guy. i don’t know what should i do now. could somenone tell me?

Rosy_cloud's avatar

from my opinion, i think that,if both of them had fall in love with each other, they should appreciate it, because they is someone who love you. althought we don’t know what will happen in the feuture. keep on praying, ask God help, i think this problem can be solve.

cooksalot's avatar

Now the technical part is that the Jewish religion is passed through the matriarch. So if mom is not Jewish then the children are not considered Jewish and must go through the “procedures” of converting to Judaism. Which is probably why Bill Maher’s dad just stayed home and didn’t want the kids to go to Schule (spelling?) with him. Now if mom is Jewish then the children are born into Judaism. Does that make sense? At least that’s what I understand from my husbands stepfather, he’s Jewish.

lovelace's avatar

my problem is that I’m Baptist and the man I love is Church of Christ. anybody got any help for me? the church of christ believes that they are the only true church and that in order to go to heaven, you have to be added to their church. they do not believe in instrumentation and I sing…a whole lot. he comes but he doesn’t feel that it’s “true” praise and worship. i’m not hung up on denominations, not even my own, but i just can’t get with the church of christ. i need to know if i need to just let it go or is there hope.

cooksalot's avatar

Uhm, he’s LDS? Have fun I would invite him to a few bible studies. Home group if your church has it. But as a Christian there is no way I would join the LDS church. You just need to understand this is not a difference of denominations but a difference of religions.

You are a Christ believer if you have accepted Christ as your Lord and Savior, and been baptized. That the bible is the true and complete word of God inspired by God. That we have direct communication with God thru Jesus Christ.

LDS feel that the prophet speaks for God that the bible is not the correct word of God inspired by God, and you get to heaven by good works not by the grace of the blood of Christ.

If your really questioning this sit down with your pastor and talk to him. I could go on for hours but then Andrew and Ben would ban me. LOL! So my advice is if you have more questions to talk to your pastor about this.

lovelace's avatar

not married but i have a similar conflict. my problems are the children i plan to have with this man. i can handle myself and i can get over things but i don’t want our potential children to suffer in any way. they should have the op to go to church as a family event not split up or feeling like they’re choosing sides.

cooksalot's avatar

Like I said sit down with your pastor. He is there to guide you in all these things. If your uncomfortable talking to him is there a women’s ministry leader? Perhaps the pastors wife? They are all there for you so don’t be afraid.

thegodfather's avatar

@cooksalot Your caricature of Latter-day Saints and Christians deserves correction. Several denominations of Christians would quibble with you over your definition, that a Christian is such because of baptism and a belief that the Bible is the complete work of God. For instance, debates over sacraments continue to be brought up, even since the Reformation. And that the Bible is complete is mainly an evangelical characterization of Christianity; Greek Orthodox, Catholic, and other denominations might return with claims through papacy, patriarchy, or other sources for a larger canon, in some cases an apocryphal addition to the Bible, etc. Gnostics would also quibble with this definition of a Christian, based on a “complete Bible.”

Latter-day Saints do not feel that the prophet separates them from direct communication with God through Jesus Christ, nor do they consider the Bible “not the correct word of God.” What they disagree with are errant interpretations of the Bible, but not the efficacy of the Bible itself. And that you get to heaven by good works and not by the grace of the blood of Christ is certainly off. Ask any Latter-day Saint, and they’ll tell you there is no other way to salvation, only in and through Jesus Christ. Even if they did believe as you describe them in good works over grace, how is that any different from a Catholic belief in sacraments? And yet Catholicism is generally accepted as Christian, how does such a doctrine exclude Mormons?

No question Mormons aren’t mainstream Christians; but to exclude them entirely from Christianity to me seems fallacious and unfounded.

And, no question the religious commitments for Latter-day Saints are such that I don’t think one outside the faith should seriously consider marrying a Mormon, unless they have an open mind to possibly joining the religion.

tiffyandthewall's avatar

i don’t have any experience with this, but i’m guessing that it would really depend on how strongly each person feels about their religion, and how willing to compromise/be open-minded they are. you may have a problem choosing where to get married to start with, but it also may be a matter of which holidays will be celebrated (though i’m sure you can do both!). you may get into some disagreements over lifestyles (the aspects of your lives that are affected by religion), going to church/temple each week, etc. but i really think it depends heavily on the individuals. it’s hard to generalize.

mellamashermosa's avatar

Problems
#1— You believing that Jesus is the Messiah
#2— Him NOT believing that Jesus is the Messiah
#3— You believing that you are saved by faith in Jesus Christ
#4— Him believing you are saved by WORKS
#5— etc. etc. etc.
and this all equals, CONFUSED KIDS :)

elanakin's avatar

I feel that any non-religious person in a relationship with a religious person is always trouble. Since in Jewish law your kids will only be Jewish if the mother is, it’s pretty important to most religious Jewish men that their wife is Jewish.

It sounds like this guy might need you to convert to consider you a true candidate.

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