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Celebrating Interfaith Marriages: Creating Your Jewish/Christian Ceremony

The first comprehensive wedding guide specifically for the Jewish/Christian couple who wants to honor both religious traditions in their service, vows, and readings.Saying "I do" is one of the happiest moments in a couple's life together--but planning that trip to the altar can be a stressful ordeal. The minute an engagement is announced two full clans want to celebrate the union their way! When one of those families is Jewish (50 percent of whom now marry outside their faith) and the other is Christian, the religious details can increase the pressure on the bride- and groom-to-be. Celebrating Interfaith Marriages provides all of the expert advice on how to combine elements of the two faiths so everyone can rejoice with the bride and groom on their wedding day.Devon Lerner draws from her twenty years of officiating interfaith weddings as she discusses the significance of vows and traditions unique to both faiths and suggests how to incorporate them into a service that is balanced and beautiful. She provides Christian and Jewish services readers can mix and match, as well as custom-bled ceremonies contributed by couples who have worked with her over the years. There's a chapter on how to avoid crashes on issues like location, when the ceremony takes place, and whether the bride and groom should see each other before meeting at the altar. A full section of readings, both biblical and secular, are here too, as well as anecdotes that will reassure and amuse. No interfaith couple will want to be without this essential handbook when they plan their special day.

Paperback: 288 pages

Publisher: Holt Paperbacks; 1st edition (April 19, 1999)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 0805060839

ISBN-13: 978-0805060836

Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.5 inches

Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)

Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)

Best Sellers Rank: #484,652 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #42 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Weddings > Ceremony, Vows & Toasts #372 in Books > Religion & Spirituality > Judaism > Jewish Life #750 in Books > Politics & Social Sciences > Sociology > Marriage & Family

As someone who creates custom, personalized ketubot (Jewish wedding contracts), I have long sympathized with a tentative question over the phone asking if I am open to creating an interfaith ketuba. In addition to the reality that a relatively small number of rabbis perform interfaith ceremonies, I have become aware that many ketuba artists will not work with interfaith couples to create a personalized ketuba for them. The fact that someone is asking the question tells me that they have already experienced the slamming of doors in their quest to celebrate their marriage to the partner of their choice.My heartfelt response to such a question is that I would rather be part of a process that is open to their choices, to their commitment to maintain some of the rituals from their heritage, and to their future. The more open, welcoming, and responsive we are ... the more positive and loving we make the experience ... the sweeter the taste that is left in their memories ... the more likely that both the Jewish and non-Jewish partner will feel comfortable and eager to turn toward fostering Jewish practices in their home, both for themselves and for their children.So when recent ketuba clients told me how wonderful their experience was in meeting with Rabbi Devon Lerner and how helpful it was to read her book, "Celebrating Interfaith Marriages," I knew I had to find out more. When I discovered that we are practically neighbors, I read her book in preparation for a personal meeting. I was drawn in to Lerner's presentation from the beginning. The pervading sense throughout is one of acceptance and non-judgment. How refreshing!There is no assumption that the couple will adopt only Jewish practices in their home.

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