Marrying out no longer like sticking two fingers up at Judaism

AGAINST FAITH SCHOOLS: Rabbi Jonathan Romain

MARRYING out is no longer like “sticking two fingers up against Judaism”, according to a Reform minister.

Rabbi Jonathan Romain, of Maidenhead Synagogue, told the audience during the penultimate event of the MiliM literature festival: “I cannot legislate for whom people fall in love with.

“But whereas in the past if you fell in love with a non-Jewish person it was seen as two-fingers up against Judaism and rejecting Moses, now we know it is not the case.”

Speaking at The Grammar School at Leeds, the author of Confessions of a Rabbi said he was against faith schools per se.

“I’m fully in favour of faith, but I actually think it is wrong to segregate children and having groups of Jews here, Christians there and Muslims elsewhere. It divides them,” he said.

“It leads to ignorance and prejudice, and because we live in a multi-faith society we have to work really hard to bring the children together so that they grow up as fellow citizens and not strangers.”

He said he wanted his children “to know their Christian friends, do homework with a Hindu, walk home with an atheist and that way they get to know them and they get to know my children”.

He added: “Obviously every rabbi wants to see his congregation marry within their own faiths, just as Sikhs, Hindus and Muslims do, but we live in an open society where people meet other people at work or at the gym or even at the bus stop for example.

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