Can someone who is not Jewish be a “Jewish Community Hero?”
JOI has nominated what may be the first person who is not Jewish to the “Jewish Community Heroes” contest run by United Jewish Communities. Abigail (“Abi”) Auer sacrificed transmitting the religious traditions of her Catholic upbringing in order to help her Jewish spouse raise their children as Jews, and is now a vocal advocate on behalf of all intermarried households raising Jewish children. She represents a half-million or more members of our community who are not Jewish themselves but are making the same sacrifice in order to ensure the Jewish future. Her profile is online at: Jewishcommunityheroes.org
Abi participated in the pilot program of JOI’s Mothers Circle, an educational course for women of other religious backgrounds raising Jewish children, which is now in 100 communities across North America, and she serves as a model and mentor to others who are just beginning their Jewish journeys.
For the past two decades, there have been twice the number of intermarriages than in-marriages in the United States, and if not for the efforts of Abi and parents like her, the Jewish community would be declining rapidly in numbers instead of holding steady or even increasing as some studies suggest. Recognizing Abi as the Jewish Community Hero that she is will send a powerful message to her and all other Jewish households where one spouse happens not to be Jewish, that we in the Jewish community thank you and appreciate your sacrifices on our behalf.
If you’d like to vote for Abi, you can do so by visiting her profile and clicking the “Vote for This Hero” link.