The 2005 Greater Boston Community Study: Intermarried Families and Their Children
The rate of intermarriage is changing American Jewish life. In the near future, in Boston and across America, the number of children born to intermarried households in America will equal or exceed
those born into households consisting of two Jews married to each other. The 2005 Boston Community Survey: Preliminary Findings, a report prepared by the Steinhardt Social Research Institute (SSRI) of Brandeis University for Combined Jewish Philanthropies in November of 2006, found that an estimated 60 percent of the children born to intermarried families are being raised solely as Jews. This figure is among the higher end of estimates that have been documented across the country.
In the year since the preliminary results were released, we have analyzed these results in great depth. This follow-up study explores the practices of these intermarried Jewish families and the
experiences of their children. It corroborates and expands the prior analysis. The analysis presented in this report documents that intermarried families choosing to raise their
children as Jews are deeply engaged in Jewish practice. In what are widely seen as traditional Jewish ritual practices, intermarried families with Jewish children are generally as observant as inmarried Jewish families, especially Reform families, and their children become B’nai Mitzvah at the same rates. At key moments, they participate in synagogue life in similar ways to other Jews. They report feeling welcomed and a part of the community.
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Preuss, Gil. Gan, Katherine N. Jacobson, Patty. Shrage, Barry. The 2005 Greater Boston Community Study: Intermarried Families and Their Children. Combined Jewish Philanthropies of Greater Boston (CJP). March 2008: http://www.bjpa.org/Publications/details.cfm?PublicationID=13454
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