Conversion and Affirmation

Conversion and Affirmation, LGBTQ+

Ode to Spontaneous Selves

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by Al Reitz It was fall the first time I asked my mom if I looked handsome, about halfway through my process of becoming Jewish. It’s hard to forget a moment like that—something shifts. I had my chin up high, my button-down shirt layered under a leather jacket. I wasn’t sold on the word quite […]

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Returning to Mikveh

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by Phyllis Hirth Here’s my timeline, short and sweet: I was born in Connecticut, raised as a Catholic, moved to New York after college, met my husband, and married into a Conservative Jewish family. My first experience with mikveh was during my own conversion to Judaism. My memory of that is less than pleasant. A woman […]

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Stepping into the Water

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by Jo Radner They knew, those old rabbis, that the rod of Moses did not part the sea. No magic wand could wrench generations from the narrow places, hauling Egyptian rocks, tilling Egyptian soil, pounding Egyptian laundry by the river. Never mind the straggling, befuddled exiles, never mind the hurtling chariots – That brimming sea […]

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New Jews and Israel: Building a Relationship

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by Lisa Berman, Mikveh and Education Director I became a Jew (by choice) in December, 1980. I’ve been Jewish for 36 years — so long that many who know me don’t realize I wasn’t always Jewish. My observance, knowledge, and confidence about Judaism has grown each year. But, to be honest, for most of those […]

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The Gift of Guiding

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by Rene Katersky, Mikveh Guide As I approach another significant birthday, one ending in “0” (aren’t they all significant at this age?), I have been thinking a lot about the self-imposed benefits of turning another year older. I am mindful of my desire to say “no” more often…no to things I no longer feel passionate […]

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Off the Deep End!

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Reposted by Mayyim Hayyim in recognition of the recent launch of “Now What?,” a post-conversion curriculum for new Jews and their partners now available for your community! by Cantor Louise Egbert Treitman I converted to Judaism almost 45 years ago and have been immersed in the Jewish world ever since. I was still in college when […]

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“Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”…and Other Challenges

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by Leeza Negelev, Associate Director of Education Last spring, I sat in the Mayyim Hayyim Education Center with a group of people who had at some point made the decision to become Jewish. It was the very first session of “Now What? Questions and Answers for Those Who Have Chosen Judaism,” a program Mayyim Hayyim […]

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A Gift for Mom

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Excerpts from Keeping the Faith: How Compromise, Curiosity and Tradition Guide One Interfaith Family, by Abigail Mnookin Reflections before the mikveh: For my mom’s 70th birthday this month, my brother and I are giving her an unusual gift. Her four grandchildren will be immersed in a ritual bath, or mikveh, which symbolizes their conversion to […]

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  • COVID-19 Update

    At this time Mayyim Hayyim is open for immersions and has made a number of adjustments to our regular procedures. Our education center and art gallery are temporarily closed to minimize traffic and possible exposure in order to create the safest possible environment for those who wish to immerse. See here for more information about using the mikveh during this time.