These Parents Raised One Child Jewish and the Other Child Catholic
Interfaith couples have to face a huge decision when they have kids: How should the family approach faith from now on? In some couples, one parent converts to the other's religion. In others, the kids are raised with both traditions instead. But Diane and Bob Greenberg used a different strategy: Raise one Jewish, and raise the other Catholic.
Steven was raised Jewish, like his father, and Katie was raised Catholic, like Mom. The Greenbergs talked to Today.com about their unique religious lessons, and the stumbling blocks they experienced along the way.
"I know people have looked at us like we were nuts," Diane said. "I didn't really want to tell either one of our families for a long time what we were planning. We kept mum about it to most people but if we did tell friends, they all said we were crazy."
They decided to raise their son Jewish because he'd have the last name Greenberg, and raise their daughter Catholic because she might change her name going forward. Katie went to Catholic school every week, and Steven went to a Hebrew school; they both attended an interfaith education program run by the Hebrew school.
But as Steven got older, his faith became an issue. His temple wouldn't let him have a bar mitzvah, because in Orthodox Judaism, your mother passes down the religion, and his mother wasn't Jewish. They tried going to a reform Jewish temple, but nothing panned out. And at an early age, Steven said he didn't believe in God, and didn't feel much of a religious identity.
Today, both kids are in their twenties; Katie identifies as a Catholic and Steven identifies as agnostic. They both take part in religious traditions with their families, and don't experience much conflict about it. "I think [my parents] did a good job with it," Katie told Today.com.
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