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While this question applies to me it is being edited to become more general in accordance with the rules of this site.

If an infant, the child of a non-Jewish mother (and therefore not Jewish), is adopted by Jewish parents as a minor, but that child is raised Jewish in a home that keeps Shabbos and kosher, what is the correct procedure to prove that this person is or is not Jewish once they become an adult? What should have been done, and now that the person is an adult, what should he or she do? Is having had a bar or bat mitzvah relevant? What about having attended an Orthodox shul?

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    Welcome to Mi Yodeya! I am sorry to hear that your situation has been so frustrating. I've marked this as a duplicate of a more-general question we have on determining Jewish status. This might lead you to ask followup questions, which is fine. (I can't remember if we have a question about researching documentation in adoption cases; we might, as this does come up from time to time.) We try to avoid questions that involve personal determinations; for that you should consult a rabbi, perhaps the one whose shul you grew up in if he's still available. Thanks, and I hope to see you around. – Monica Cellio Dec 12 '15 at 23:29
  • @Monica that answer absolutely does not address this case of underage conversion. If you want to keep this question closed as asking for a personal ruling is one thing but calling this a duplicate of that is wrong. Even the linked article does not address this complex case. – user6591 Dec 13 '15 at 0:19
  • @user6591 the core of this question seems to be: "oes this mean the same thing as being "converted at a young age", so I am officially Jewish?" The answer on the other question looks like it addresses this to the extent that we can address that on this site; can you clarify (preferably in a meta post) why you think it doesn't? – Monica Cellio Dec 13 '15 at 5:43
  • First of all, if your parents had you converted as a minor, then they should have documents from the bais din that performed the conversion testifying to that fact. Secondly, when you reached the age of Bat Mitzvah (12 not 13), then you should have confirmed this before a bais din as an adult in order for the conversion to be considered valid. I know of people who as an adult converted again because the initial conversion was no valid (for various reasons) or because they could not verify the validity of the conversion. I would suggest discussing this with a rav who is an expert in this. – sabbahillel Dec 13 '15 at 15:00
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    Take a look at judaismconversion.org/contact.html which has the contact information for the Rabbinical Council of America on conversion which is also recognized by the Israeli chief rabbinate as a valid source. I think that they can help your specific case. – sabbahillel Dec 13 '15 at 15:23
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First of all, The adoptive parents should have had the infant converted as a minor. If this was done, then they should have documents from the bais din that performed the conversion testifying to that fact. Secondly, when the child reached the age of Bat Mitzvah (12) or Bar Mitzvah (13), then he or she should have confirmed this before a bais din as an adult in order for the conversion to be considered valid. I know of people who as an adult converted again because the initial conversion was not valid (for various reasons) or because they could not verify the validity of the conversion. I would suggest discussing this with a rav who is an expert in this.

Take a look at Orthodox Conversion to Judaism which has the contact information for the Rabbinical Council of America on conversion which is also recognized by the Israeli chief rabbinate as a valid source. I think that they can help your specific case.

  • Thanks to all who responded. My adoptive parents and all family are deceased as is the Rabbi. I never knew this was something I had to ask them about until I saw questions and answers here. Sorry for my redundancy and inclusion of personal feelings, etc. I didn't know the latter was frowned upon here. In any case, I greatly appreciate the responses. God knows who I am in my soul so that is all that really matters. Thank you again. – CKat9 Dec 14 '15 at 6:51
  • @CKat9 If there are no documents in the family records, I would suggest that you investigate converting (again) so that you will be able to marry according to Jewish law and have no problems with your children. May your future work out properly and with blessings. – sabbahillel Dec 14 '15 at 12:18
  • Thank you, Sabbahillel. Many blessings to you for a beautiful future as well. – CKat9 Dec 15 '15 at 14:41

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