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Author:  Jim
E-mail:  menahel@aol.com
Date:  6/24/2005 6:50:00 PM
Subject:  Entering Reform and Conservative Shuls
Message:  Your reason for forbidding entrance into Reform and Conservative shuls is that you don't want your readers to "give credibility" to them.

Do you believe members of these shuls will "see the light" and become Orthodox because someone refuses to step foot in their shuls?

I don't believe the "negative" approach works with most people. In fact, a more positive approach to other groups may even lead to more respect for Orthodox Jews and a stricter approach to Yiddishkeit.

Lest you say this isn't relevant to a web site on Kashrut, I'd say that Kashrut is partially about preserving Jewish identity and unity ("a people that dwells apart" = apart from non-Jews, but not from each other).

Shabbat Shalom!


   
Reply:  You may be correct in your thinking, based on common sense, however the Halacha says differently. With that in mind, we are able to feel comfortable that even though we may have been able to bring Jews closer, we didn't because we followed Halacha.
I don't believe going to their temples and joining the watered down Judaism, will bring anyone closer to Orthodoxy. On the contrary, it may have the opposite effect, Chas V'shalom. The people there may say, "see our way is right, even they are coming here". We can never let them think that way.
I never heard that Kashrut had anything to do with Jewish Identity. Dress, language and names have more to do with Jewish identity. Those distinctions, were the reasons we were able to survive in Egypt 3000 years ago. Incidentally, we are losing those three distinctions.
I believe that most Orthodox people will welcome any Jew to their home with open arms, irrespective of their level. I think you know that too.
CYA

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