Interfaith Marriage: Common Problems and How to Fix Them

Sylvia Smith loves to share insights on how couples can revitalize their love lives in and out of the bedroom. As a writer at, she is a big believer in living consciously and encourages couples to adopt this hot dutch woman principle in their lives too. Sylvia believes that every couple can transform their relationship into a happier, healthier one by taking purposeful and wholehearted action.

  • But when a widowed, elderly Holocaust survivor and close family friend wanted to marry another close friend, a non‑Jewish woman, she gladly agreed to participate in the ceremony.
  • Tucked within a very long — and very good — essay on friendship that’s in the latest edition of The Atlantic is a beautiful reflection on the seven deadly sins.
  • And, sure, they can also be destroyed by the religious gap between the parties.
  • These interfaith marriages are material representations of a new space in the American religious landscape.

Some of the concerns are specifically religious and grounded in understandings of scripture itself. And some of them are also grounded is significant research data showing the interfaith marriage in fact contributes significantly to losing people from Jewish faith, practice and culture altogether.

The latest data on romance and religion

The joining together of two faiths in one marriage is a momentous occasion. Instead of being swept under the rug, it should be explicitly celebrated! The right officiant for your service will know to acknowledge the interfaith nature of your union at the top of the ceremony and will explain the symbolism behind and reasons for certain traditions, prayers, and blessings while they perform the rituals. Not only will that help everyone in attendance understand what’s going on, but it also allows the two families to better recognize and appreciate any overlap between the two faiths, which is key for further unification. An interfaith wedding occurs when two people of different religious backgrounds blend their religious customs and traditions into one wedding.

For many parents, their children must learn about both religions so that they can make an informed decision about their own beliefs when they reach adulthood. Interfaith marriage, sometimes called a “mixed marriage”, is marriage between spouses professing different religions. Although interfaith marriages are often established as civil marriages, in some instances they may be established as a religious marriage. This depends on religious doctrine of each of the two parties’ religions; some prohibit interfaith marriage, and among others there are varying degrees of permissibility. “The biggest challenge most interfaith couples face is how their families are going to feel,” says Greenfeld. As a woman in ministry and a pastor’s wife, I cannot count the number of times women have asked me whether or not interfaith marriage is okay. This is an interesting question to pose, one that comes complete with heartstrings attached, fear of judgment within the church, concern about parenting, and eternal ramifications.

Choosing which religion to raise their children in is one of the most common problems interfaith couples face. For many couples, this decision is based on a desire to expose their children to both religions and allow them to choose their path when they reach adulthood. In Israel, marriages are performed by delegated religious authorities and people must marry people with the same religion. Interfaith marriages are not allowed domestically but interfaith marriages performed in other countries are recognized.

Those facing interfaith marriage problems must communicate with their partner and try to find a compromise. They may also want help from a professional if they struggle to overcome their relationship’s challenges. These factors can contribute to a higher divorce rate in interfaith marriages. However, it is essential to remember that every relationship is different, and not all interfaith marriages will end in divorce. This pressure can be tough to deal with, particularly if you are already feeling insecure about your decision to marry someone from a different faith.

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“Where you’d have a couple of Jewish prayers, maybe there’s a psalm I could insert that would make them feel more comfortable,” she muses. “Include statements about how you’ll respect, honor, and incorporate your partner’s religion in your own life,” says Greenfeld. If religion is important enough in your life that it’s guiding your wedding service, then it’s important enough for each spouse to acknowledge in the vows they declare to uphold in the marriage going forward. Building upon empirical investigations and adopting an inductive approach, the analysis unveils flexible adjustments as enacted by transnational couples crossing confessional boundaries within the framework of sharīʿah.

Marriage has become many things, including, in western society, a legal contract. Some modern young couples having children choose not to marry at all. Similarly, older couples have found that not marrying keeps financial arrangements simpler. Indeed, when the Samaritans and the Hebrews were in Babylonian captivity, they did not consider themselves of the same culture or of the same race. The decision to work together and survive seemed to give birth to emotions that brought couples together to work through custom and rite.