When real-estate royalty Ivanka Trump married budding media mogul Jared Kushner in October, 2009, it wasn't their pre-nup that people were talking about. Instead, the bride's conversion to Judaism—groom Kushner's religion—and the orthodox ceremony that followed made headlines. Ivanka isn't the only high-profile celeb to convert to a new religion before marriage. Katie Holmes practices Scientology for Tom Cruise; Isla Fisher converted to Judaism for her fiancé, Bruno star Sacha Baron Cohen; and Kylie Minogue is reportedly considering converting to Catholicism before marrying Spanish boyfriend, Andres Velencoso. Ivanka Trump To Convert To Judaism
A recent study by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life found that about half of Americans have changed religions at some point in their lives. Statistics vary by sect, but about 25 percent of people who converted to another religion did so because they married someone of their new faith.
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Conversion is a thorny issue for many soon-to-be brides. It's difficult when partners are different denominations within the same religion, and still more complicated when your religious backgrounds or religious beliefs are completely different. So, if you're struggling with how to marry your beliefs with your partner's before you actually marry him, know that you're not alone. Here's what the experts—and brides who have been there—say you need to know.
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There Are Some Good Reasons To Convert
A genuine interest in your potential religion is key. "If you ask yourself 'Why am I thinking of converting?' and the answer is: 'Because I am looking for a spiritual community and discipline that will give my life a greater sense of meaning and purpose and belonging,' then pursuing the path of possible conversion makes sense," says Rabbi Steven Carr Reuben, Ph.D. and author of There's An Easter Egg On Your Seder Plate.