If a child was converted as a child and then rejects that conversion at the age of maturity, does it have backwards implications? Say they touched non mevushal wine before rejecting the conversion… does it become forbidden for a Jew to drink after the fact? If they cooked food before rejecting, does the food become forbidden? Hopefully they weren’t having kids before the age of maturity, but if they did, do those kids also become retroactively non Jewish/ being seen as having a non Jewish father halachically depending the gender of the parent who was converted and rejected? Are there any other things that could be retroactively changed status based on their rejection?

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    The implication of Kesubos 11a is that we have no issue with them getting married (with the attendant issurim if they wouldn't be Jewish), only with the payment of the Kesuba which would be eaten 'begoyusa'
    – AKA
    Commented Jan 29 at 7:44
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    The simple explanation for the above is that it's a takanas Chazal to permit things, as is the entire geirus according to Tosafos there...
    – AKA
    Commented Jan 29 at 7:46

1 Answer 1


פתחי תשובה יורה דעה רס"ח:ז

cites Chasam Sofer as holding that rejection is effective retroactively and is indeed problematic vis a vis wine that is touched as well as for a jewess that had relations with him (with regard to becoming disqualified to marry a Kohen)

וכתב עוד היכא דיכול למחות ודאי דמיעקר עקר הגירות למפרע והיין הנשאר שנגע בו קודם מחאתו הוא ככל מגע עובד כוכבים קטן ביין שלנו ואם בא על בת ישראל בהיותו בן ט' נפסלה מהכהונה כו' אך אנו אין צריכין לחוש לזה כלל שמא ימחה ולכן מברכין בשעת טבילה ומניחין אותו ליגע ביין או להנשא לאיש או לישא ישראלית כו' עש"ב

Presumably there would be a בישול עכום issue

In the responsum he mentions that if the minor convert is a female then just as she wouldn't be eligible for the fine allocated for say rape she would also lose her kesubah

בנים הרי הם כסימנים (in other words, a girl who gives birth does not retain the legal status of a minor, as the very fact that she bore children is equivalent to a physical sign of maturity, usually in the form of pubic hairs—Steinsaltz commentary ad loc) would limit the possibility of children being born to a convert that subsequently rejects his/her Judaism as repudiation is very limited after gadlus, see Beis Yosef YD 268:14.

Should it occur the minor convert's child would lichorah retroactively never have been Jewish in Chasam Sofer's conception

Presumably another ramification would be according to R"T that a married jewess who has an affair with a non Jewish man is permitted to marry him after he converts (and her marriage ends), a male minor convert that had an affair (from 9 y/o+) with a married Jewish woman who then repudiates Judaism would be allowed to marry the woman if he converts as an adult as it turns out that when they had slept together he wasn't Jewish and it didn't generate an issur "בועל"

(Chasam Sofer elsewhere is of the opinion that Bnei Noach attain majority prior to puberty based on their congnitive maturity vs Jews where majority depends upon puberty. Lishitaso, if a minor convert were to transgress the sheva mitzvos bnei noach after attaining the mental/emotional maturity necessary for gadlus vis a vis noachide law but prior to puberty/majority in Jewish law and then repudiates Judaism, he/she would ostensibly be on the hook retroactively for violating noachide law as a full fledged adult, all this assuming that Chasam Sofer is not of the opinion that all Jews are obligated as noachides prior to puberty)

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    +1 There might be an edge case for children -where she finds out she was converted at a later point . According to some (all?) she could reject at that point.
    – AKA
    Commented Jan 29 at 18:54
  • To clarify: as per the Gemara the sugya is based on, she would not receive her Kesuba/knas at all until after she has matured and confirmed her geirus. For some reason (see Rashba) we are more concerned about the kesuba than anything other issur, where we rely on the implausibility of her rejecting.
    – AKA
    Commented Jan 29 at 19:34

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