Becoming a Humanistic Jew
Humanistic Jews welcome individuals from other traditions who wish to become part of the Humanistic Jewish family and identify as a member of the Jewish people. We believe that all those who wish to identify with the Jewish people should be able to do so. Humanistic Jews use the term “adopted” rather than “converted” because we believe that the person wishing to be Jewish is adopting both Judaism and our community and that the community adopts those desiring to be part of the Jewish people.
The Association of Humanistic Rabbis recognizes the need for a new approach to such adoptions into Judaism and has stated “that a person who seeks to embrace Jewish identity should be encouraged to do so and should be assisted in this endeavor.”
In 1988, a group of Secular Humanistic Jews meeting in Brussels released a statement declaring in part that “… a Jew is a person of Jewish descent or any person who declares himself or herself to be a Jew and who identifies with the history, ethical values, culture, civilization, community, and fate of the Jewish people.”
The Society assists those who are not near an existing Humanistic Jewish congregation but want to adopt Judaism. A course of self-study is recommended and provided. A certificate is offered and a Hebrew name given if desired. Contact SHJ Rabbi Miriam Jerris for information about the program of self-study. When you write to Rabbi Jerris, please include your name, address, and phone number.