Rabbi Cosgrove makes some good points in his Opinion piece, “To Officiate Or Not At Intermarriages” (March 17). But I think his essay misses the point.
Worse, he contradicts himself with his own logic. He writes that “it is a statistical dead heat in Jewish engagement between in-married and intermarried couples for whom a rabbi was the sole officiant.” But then he concludes, “I do not think it is wise, given the undisputed place in-marriage has as the single most important determinant in ensuring Jewish continuity.”
Actually, according to the study the rabbi cites, in-marriage has no effect. And then the best that can be said is we will respect “the spiritual integrity of the non-Jewish member of your Jewish family.”
That’s weak, and in my experience this low bar is rarely accomplished. I think we can do better.