Send to Friend  Bookmark  Print

March 22, 2007 eNewsletter


 Web Magazine

March 22, 2007

Print entire issue

Dear friend,

The "December dilemma" is better known, but Passover and Easter are not without conflict for interfaith families. Unlike Christmas, which typically falls after Hanukkah, Easter usually falls during Passover, which can create touchy situations when a Passover-observant family wants to go to a Christian family's home for Easter dinner. Passover and Easter are also both very religious holidays, not as easily secularized as Christmas or Hanukkah. Call the conflict the "Spring Situation." In the new issue of our Web Magazine on Passover and Easter , we hear from interfaith couples on how they negotiate the two holidays.

We polled more than 680 people, including 236 in interfaith relationships who are raising their children Jewish. Find out how other couples are balancing their celebrations of Passover and Easter in What We Learned from the 2007 Passover/Easter Survey. (Also in PDF format .)

Faye Rapoport DesPres and her non-Jewish boyfriend invited their parents over for Passover. And forgot to defrost the turkey, in Our First Seder .

Every Easter Rebecca Gopoian and her Christian husband argue about faith, in If He Believes in God, Will He Leave Me Someday?

Kia Silverman isn't Christian but she grew up celebrating Christmas and Easter. Now that she's raising her children in her husband's Jewish faith, she's trying to figure out how to balance the spring holidays, in A Sticky Situation .

Abby Spotts, meanwhile, grew up in an observant Conservative home. Passover meant cleaning the house, blocking off certain cabinets and removing all leavened bread from of the house. With her Catholic husband, she doesn't go so far, but she's Making Passover Work in An Interfaith Home .

Both of Tom Friedland's kids are intermarried, but their spouses have very different attitudes about attending the seder. Hear more in The Reluctant Son-in-Law .


Judith van Praag, the child of a non-Jewish mom and a Jewish dad, shares recipes from the "carbohydrate heaven" Passover meals of her youth, including gremchelich, thick pancakes of matzah brei with raisins, almonds and candied ginger .

From Our Article Archive

Jayne Cohen shares more recipes, including smoked whitefish gefilte fish with lemon-horseradish sauce, chicken soup with asparagus and shiitakes and roasted fennel matzah balls and mango and sour cherry macaroon crumble. Read more .

Special Report

Ever wonder why traditional Judaism recognizes only the children of Jewish mothers as Jewish? So did J.R. Wilheim, whose mother wasn't Jewish. After years of research into the Bible, rabbinical commentary and social history, he came to a conclusion: he has no idea. Learn what he found in the provocative The Truth About Matrilineal Descent .

Arts and Entertainment

In the newest installment of Interfaith Celebrities , Nate Bloom looks at interfaith baseball players--including promising soph Ian Kinsler--and Michael Chiklis ("The Shield," "The Commish") and his Jewish wife.


A meditating mom reviews the Haggadah for Jews & Buddhists in The Four Questions Meet the Four Noble Truths .

Feeling lost at the seder? Jewish Holidays 101  gives a good foundation for understanding Judaism's sometimes mysterious rituals.

What's New on the Blogs

On the IFF Network Blog, we recently wrote about a Sunday school where the parents learn as much as the kids and a Lebanese-Jewish romance .

On the Weddings Blog, Bryan can't figure out whether to make his Christian son go to a seder--or let him play t-ball .

Coming Next

Our next issue, on Death and Mourning, will be published April 10.


Micah Sachs, Online Managing Editor

Write for Us!

We're looking for writers on the following topics:

  • Secular life in your interfaith family
  • Coming out about your interfaith relationship

We're also looking for a couple willing to be interviewed about relationship issues for a 10-minute audio interview.

Interested in any of these topics? Contact Web Magazine Editor Ronnie Friedland at .

Connections In Your Area--Featured Events


Network News

Announcing Our New Resource for Educators and Outreach Professionals has created a packet for educators and outreach professionals called Passover in Interfaith Families. It includes three essays from IFF, a discussion guide, tips for hosting an inclusive seder, recommended resources and activities for children. To download it, click here. (Login required.)

The Results Are In

We've released the results of our 2007 Passover-Easter Survey. We received 684 responses, with 236 in interfaith relationships raising Jewish children. For a report on the results, click here. (Also in PDF format.)

Know An Interfaith-Friendly Cemetery?

We're compiling a list of Jewish cemeteries that will bury interfaith couples side-by-side. If you know of an interfaith-friendly Jewish cemetery in your area, please email Community Connections Coordinator Amy Rovin at

What Do You Think?

We want to know: Is it harder to be a non-Jewish guest at a Passover seder, or a Jewish guest at an Easter dinner?

Ways You Can Get Involved

Support Us.  If what we do helps you or others you care about, please make a tax-deductible charitable contribution in support of our work.


Spread the Word.  Ask your friends to subscribe to our  eNewsletter --the more people we reach, the better!




Yiddish for "stuffed fish," a patty made of ground up varieties of fish, matzo meal and spices, boiled in fish broth. A popular dish on Passover, sometimes served on Shabbat and other holidays as well. Hebrew for "telling," the text that outlines the order of the Passover seder. There are many, many versions of this book, which dates back almost 2,000 years. Because we are commanded to expand upon the story, the Haggadah contains ancient interpretations, as well as stage directions and explanations, for the Passover meal. Hanukkah (known by many spellings) is an eight-day Jewish holiday commemorating the rededication of the Second Temple in Jerusalem at the time of the Maccabean Revolt of the 2nd Century BCE. It is marked by the lighting of a menorah and the eating of fried foods.
Send to Friend  Bookmark  Print