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Topic: Jewish Mother


Richard Pedowitz from Seattle, WA wrote:

Dear Rabbi,

I was approached by a woman with the following story:

"At age 52 I learned that my maternal grandmother was an orphan and was Jewish. As a baby she was placed in a Catholic household and reared as a Catholic. She reared my mother as a Catholic and my mother reared me as a Catholic.

The story generated the following questions: "What is my status according to Jewish law? What is the status of my children according to Jewish law?" She is genuinely curious. I look forward to your response. Thank you very much.

Dear Richard Pedowitz,

She is Jewish. If the facts are true as she has stated them, then she is 100 percent Jewish, and so are her children. This is so because a person's Jewishness is determined by the mother.

  • Tractate Kiddushin 66b & 68b
  • Code of Jewish Law, Even Haezer 8:5

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