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Non-Orthodox Conversion

Category: // By Rabbi: הרב ירון אשכנזי // Answer date: 01.01.2021

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Question:

I know someone who acts like a regular religious Jew. However I know that a few years ago he underwent a conversion by the “Liberal Jews” in Europe. Can I treat him, like a Jew (because sometimes we are very tight on Minyan here). Can I let him pour me wine which is not cooked? Would I even be allowed to ask him to do to do Melacha on Shabbat?

Answer:

A conversion which was performed by Liberal or progressive Jews have he same status as Reform conversions which are invalid. Any person who underwent a Reform conversion is considered a Non-Jew for all things and it is permitted to ask him to do Melacha on Shabbat, until he decides he wasn’t to undergo a Orthodox conversion.
Explanation:
It is known that all of these movements, Reform, Liberal, Progressive, do not believe in in the in basic tenets of Judaism and most of the Torah itself. It is obvious any sort of conversion performed by them would be invalid.
First the Rabbi s and leaders of the movement are themselves not Shomer Shabbat or Kashrut and conversion needs a valid Beit Din to perform it. Anyone who is Mechalel Shabbat cannot sit on a Beit Din. As the Gemara in Yevamot Daf 46b writes:
Rabba related a story which happened in the Beit Midrash of R’ Chiyya bar Rebbi (Rav Yosef said it was R’ Oshaya bar Rebbi, and Rav Safra said R’ Oshaya B’rebbi Chiyya ) that a Convert who di Brit Milah but not Tevillah came before him. He told him to stay here and tomorrow we will do Tevillah. We derive from here three Halakhot. To become a convert needs three …
The Gemara explains a Ger needs a Beit Din because the passuk says by a convert “Mishpat Echad” one Mishpat which means a Beit Din of three.
Even though there are differing opinions as to how many Dayanim are needed to do perform a Conversion everyone agrees that they need to be a valid Beit Din. Some Poskim (Mordechai) who compare a Beit Din or conversion to that of Beit Din monetary disputes which needs one Dayan, they still require someone who is an expert in Jewish Law and who follows it. The Shulchan Aruch in Yoreh Deah 268 rules that we need three Dayanim who are Kasher to judge. ( because it is like a Beit Din of criminal law which needs three from the Torah.) The Rema rules that those who watch the Tevilla must be three Talmidei Chachamim. The Maharam Shik rules that the Beit Din can be made of two Kosher Dayanim (who keep the Torah) and one Chacham who knows Hilchot Geriut well. The Shulchan Aruch in Choshen Mishpat Siman 7 rules that anyone who is disqualified to be as Witness is disqualified to be a Dayan. For this reason R’ Chaim Ozer Grodzinsky in Achiezer (3:27) ruled Reform conversion to be invalid.
Another reasons to invalidate Reform etc. conversions are because the Geirim do not accept all of the Mitzvot in the Torah. The Gemara in Bechorot Daf 30 b writes: A Non-Jew who comes to accept the Torah except for one thing we cannot accept him , Rabi Yossi BeRebbi Yehuda says even one minor law rule from the Rabbis (we won’t accept him). In Achiezer R’ Chaim Ozer writes that accepting the false opinions of the Reforms (and whoever follows in their footsteps) is not considered accepting the Torah and it is like accepting the Torah except for one thing which is invalid. So too many many Poskim concur Reform Conversion is completely invalid, among them the Chafetz Chaim, R’ Moshe Feinstein , HaRav Ovadia Yosef, and R’ Vosner.



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