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Judy: Can one who converted to Judaism become a rabbi?


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Rabbi Yrachmiel Tilles: Shalom-Welcome. I'll be with you in a moment. You can start typing your question if you like.

Judy: Can a man who converted to Judaism become a rabbi?

Rabbi Yrachmiel Tilles: Yes.

Rabbi Yrachmiel Tilles: Have you ever read Pirkei Avot?

Judy: No, is that a story?

Rabbi Yrachmiel Tilles: It is a tractate of the Mishnah. It quotes several Rabbis who were considered the leading rabbis of their generation 2000 years ago and they were converts.

Rabbi Yrachmiel Tilles: Today too, I know quite a few convert-rabbis here in Israel.

Judy: Oh, that's interesting.

Judy: I asked a friend and she disagreed with me, so I decided to ask here.

Rabbi Yrachmiel Tilles: :-)

Judy: I thought that a convert could become a rabbi because you're suppose to treat a convert like any other person. So I figured I was right.

Rabbi Yrachmiel Tilles: Good thinking.

Judy: Thank you, rabbi! Have a great day.

Judy: Goodbye :)

Rabbi Yrachmiel Tilles: You too.

Ed. note: Also read "Why should I choose an Orthodox conversion?"

All names, places, and identifying information have been changed or deleted in order to protect the privacy of the questioners. In order to preserve authenticity, the chat sessions have been posted with a minimum of editing. Please excuse typographical errors, missing punctuation, and/or grammatical mistakes which naturally occur in the course of informal chat sessions.


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"Ethics of our Fathers." A tractate of the Mishna (original rendition of the Oral Law) which discusses Jewish ethics and piety.
First written rendition of the Oral Law which G-d spoke to Moses. Rabbi Judah the Prince compiled the Mishna in the 2nd century lest the Oral law be forgotten due to the hardships of the Jewish exiles.