A woman is converted as an infant, but was never told of her conversion. She lives her life, marries, has children and grandchildren, and eventually passes away, never knowing the truth. One of her descendants does a DNA test and discovers the truth. What is the status of her children and her daughter’s children?

Related to this, before the truth is out, one child suspects their mother was an infant convert. Are they allowed to test to find out? If they discover the truth while their mother is alive, are they required to tell her, even if it will cause her significant distress?

  • 7
    what is a DNA test going to show in this case?
    – Joel K
    Oct 12, 2023 at 8:35
  • 3
    There are no "Jew" genes that show up in a DNA test, or any other laboratory test, for that matter. Being "Jewish" is a spiritual reality, not a physical one, that can be discerned through physical means. Oct 12, 2023 at 8:51
  • 4
    Really this question is -- if someone was converted as a minor and never informed, what's their status later on? The Talmud says you should inform them before their bar/bat mitzvah and let the opt out ... but what if you never did? I suggest you simply ask that question, as if this woman is Jewish, so are her children. Of course, assuming the conversion was actually done properly ...
    – Shalom
    Oct 12, 2023 at 11:22
  • @JoelK suppose someone does a DNA test and finds with 99.9999% certainly their parents are Barack and Michelle Obama instead of Baruch and Malki Goldbergstein
    – Double AA
    Oct 12, 2023 at 12:33
  • In this case it would show that the mother is not related to their grandparents; ie. grandparents are 100% Ashkenazi and the mother is not Ashkenazi. Oct 12, 2023 at 13:58


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