You are welcome here! Danforth Jewish Circle (DJC) welcomes interfaith couples and families, and multi-heritage individuals.
DJC is committed to creating a warm, joyous, and inviting Jewish space for interfaith couples and families and multi-heritage individuals to build community, participate, and grow.
As a progressive Jewish community, we welcome you into our congregation and offer education and support if needed. We all have different stories and starting places. DJC strives to understand your needs and helps you find your Jewish happy place. We pride ourselves on being a place where non-Jewish partners are welcome to participate in and support Jewish life in our community.
Yes! About ⅓ of our community is made up of interfaith and/or intercultural households. You and your partner are welcome to attend our services and participate in our community.
The prophet Isaiah said: “My house shall be called a house of prayer for all peoples.” (Isaiah 56:7) We know from the Torah that from the very earliest days, there have been individuals who lived with the Jewish community but who were not themselves Jewish.
No. You are welcome to participate in all aspects of our services and, of course, at any life-cycle events to which you are invited (for example, a wedding).
As a progressive Jewish Community, we have created a pathway for all, regardless of their faith, to participate in ritual leadership to the extent they wish. We offer a Ritual Leadership program for all those in our community who want to perform certain rituals, such as leading a prayer, taking the Torah out of the ark, dressing the Torah, and reading from the Torah. This program helps members understand the deeper meaning behind our Jewish rituals, and the commitment they are making by undertaking them. The program is currently offered once a year, and is available to all members, Jewish or not, at no charge.
We use both English and Hebrew in our worship services. Many of the prayers are also transliterated, so you can follow the Hebrew phonetically. We provide English translations for many of the Hebrew prayers and readings.
Much of our service is musical/sung and humming/singing along is encouraged. This makes our prayers accessible and approachable.
It is perfectly acceptable to read only the parts of the service with which you feel comfortable or to just sit and listen. If you need help finding the place in the prayer book, simply ask someone nearby.
There are many opportunities to learn about Judaism with DJC through services or attending one of our many programs. DJC also participates in the Living Jewishly program, which helps individuals explore pathways to conversion if that’s what they wish to pursue. Our rabbi is always happy to meet with you to answer your questions and explore Judaism together.
No. All of our members, regardless of their faith, are welcome to serve on our community committees, the Board, and in other facets of congregational life.
Absolutely not! The Jewish community takes delight in welcoming those who choose to embrace Judaism as their own religion. However, pressure is not a part of the process, and is strongly discouraged. You are welcome in our community as a supportive friend of the Jewish people.
Danforth Jewish Circle recognizes both matrilineal and patrilineal descent, which means that if either parent is Jewish, their children are considered Jewish.
These decisions are deeply personal. They often involve a long period of exploration and learning. DJC welcomes interfaith couples, families, and multi-heritage individuals and strives to support their journey. We have many members who live in multi-faith and/or multi-cultural households, and others who have chosen Judaism as their primary practice. Our Jewish Studies Program includes many children from these families. Our goal is to promote a joyous, positive Jewish identity for children and families, as they grow and learn.
Absolutely! Jewish tradition puts a high value on family life. We encourage both parents to be involved in their child’s school experience and we welcome your participation. A number of our programs are designed for family participation.
Absolutely! Both parents are respected as full partners in raising their children. Both parents and grandparents are welcome to be on the bima to support and celebrate their children and grandchildren.
Yes! A child’s relationship with a grandparent is a treasure to be nurtured. All grandparents are welcome to attend services and events at the congregation and the Jewish Studies Program.
The DJC supports interfaith couples who want to make a meaningful commitment to each other, and to building a home in the Jewish community. Our leaders would be happy to meet with you to discuss your plans. At this time, interfaith weddings are officiated by our Cantor Emeritus, Lisa Kent.
Yes! DJC is a partner in the Beit Olam Cemetery where all members may be buried, including interfaith couples.
Our doors are always open! Any member of the DJC team would value meeting with you. Please reach out. You can find contact information here.