Most brides worry about looking perfect in their dress, getting the invitations out on time and making sure that her mother-in-law loves her. My worries as a bride-to-be had less to do with invitations (they went out two weeks prior to the event) than with actually being allowed to marry my beloved. As an American Jew in
Many Israelis choose a civil marriage, either in
In order to open a marriage file in
A very long process ensued that included actually standing in front of the Beit Din, Israel’s religious court, otherwise known as two men sitting behind a raised bench. They kept calling in new Rabbis to see if anyone knew the Rabbi who wrote my letter of recommendation—it was a very technical process. Ultimately, we learned that the letter from the Rabbi in the
As I am currently living in
The meeting itself was harmless. The Rabbis she met with actually knew the Rabbi that had married her thirty-seven years earlier and all of the documents were in place. After six months and many different appointments, I was officially decreed a Jew! While I was elated at having the official document and being able to proceed worrying about less important wedding matters, I was left with a few questions. How did the Rabbis know who wrote my letters of recommendation? How do they know that those people actually signed said letters? How did they know I was the one in the photos?
I am positive that it sounds like my feelings toward this situation are irreverent at best and pissed off at worst, but in truth I understand the need for the process. While I find the Orthodox wedding process in
With all of the official stuff dealt with, the wedding itself was beautiful—it was a Friday morning event on a Kibbutz with lots of friends, family, good food and music.
If you are in