I’m a patrilineal “Jew” raised by my culturally catholic albeit non religious mother. I applied for birthright on a whim fully expecting to be rejected but the next thing I knew I was on a flight with a bunch of other young adults headed for Israel. It was honestly the single most amazing thing I’ve done. I made lifelong friends, learned a lot, and had so much fun! There were quite a few moments during the trip where I felt so connected and like this is exactly where I belonged, such as during Shabbat and Havadalah when we were all singing and praying together and again when we went to the kotel, or even when our staff started talking about Judaism and you could see how excited they were about being Jewish and sharing Judaism with those of us who don’t come from a particularly Jewish background. I really want to be more involved with my Jewish community at home now. Before this trip I took an intro class a few years ago just to learn more, celebrated some of the holidays with my Jewish friends, worked at the JCC and there camps just to be more connected, and would occasionally log into zoom Shabbat service. I really want to join a congregation, start being more active in my Jewish community and just be overall more observant (I.e. going completely off grid for Shabbat, keeping kosher etc.) but I also know many people would also say that I’m not actually Jewish and would need to convert (which I’d totally understand and be okay with) I just don’t really know how to approach the situation. Any advice regarding this would be much appreciated!
submitted by /u/Competitive_Bit_8111