Russia has the highest rate of Jewish intermarriage, followed by Hungary, Germany, and the US, according to a study conducted by the Institute for Jewish Policy Research (JPR) and obtained by the Jerusalem Post. According to the report, European nations currently experience the highest levels of Jewish intermarriage.
The study, titled “Intermarriage of Jews and non-Jews: the situation, the trends, and the meaning,” was conducted by Dr. Daniel Staetsky, of the JPR in London. There aren’t many studies that have been conducted throughout the years about the rates of intermarriage of Jews. According to an exclusive database created by the JPR, the rates of intermarriage vary enormously depending on the country. Israel, according to the 10 countries displayed, of the world’s largest Jewish communities, has the lowest rate of intermarriage among Jews: only 5 percent of Israeli Jews intermarry according to JPR.
Afterward, the data exposed that Belgium has 14 percent of intermarriage in its Jewish community, as well as 20 percent in Australia, 22 percent in the UK, 23 percent in Canada, 24 percent in France, 30 percent in Austria, 45 percent in the US, 46 percent in Germany, 55 percent in Hungary and 63 percent in Russia.
In addition, the JPR displayed the levels of intermarriage amongst the different religious affiliations in the US and in Europe (12 European countries). In Europe, the rate of intermarriage of “Just Jewish” and Secular Jews is 48 percent, of Reform and Progressive movement Jews 35 percent, and of Masorti/Conservative Jews 11 percent. Among Orthodox Jews in Europe, only 3 percent intermarry.
As the Orthodox community in Europe declines, Jewish intermarriage picks up
In addition, according to the JPR, in the 2020s, between 20 and 35 percent of European Jews have a non-Jewish spouse, of contracted marriage. By eliminating the Orthodox community in Europe, between 35 to 50 percent of European Jews have a non-Jewish spouse. In the US, 43 percent of married American Jews have a non-Jewish spouse.
“The research conducted by Dr. Daniel Staetsky, funded by the RCE, characterized the phenomenon of assimilation in an unprecedented way and our rabbis are expected to formulate different ways of dealing with it,” chairman of the RCE Rabbi Menachem Margolin.
The CEO of the RCE, Rabbi Aryeh Goldberg, added that “the conference is a real wake-up call for all European rabbis and Jewish communities to strengthen activities against the assimilation of the diverse values of Judaism among the youth, as well as among the entire Jewish population.”
The RCE will be holding a three-day conference in Vienna Austria on Monday, in honor of the 84th anniversary of Anschluss, the annexation of fascist Austria to the Third Reich led by Hitler on March 13th, 1938. The conference will focus on the issue of assimilation and intermarriage as well as other issues.
During the conference, this study of intermarriage will be revealed to rabbis from across Europe. The data led the heads of the RCE to initiate an “emergency conference,” to deal with these issues, according to sources in the RCE.
Dozens of rabbis from Europe will participate in the conference. Among the rabbis who will participate in the conference will be Rabbi David Lau, Chief Rabbi of Israel; Rabbi Zamir Cohen, chairman of the Hidabroot organization and others.