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This is a remarkable development given that the bat mitzvah is a 20th century innovation.Check out nearly every Jewish teen program, and you will see a gender mismatch: 60 percent girls to 40 percent boys.Even the Maccabiah sports games attract more girls than boys.

This imbalance applies to Israel programs, camps, youth movements, and non-Orthodox day schools, and has tremendous ramifications for the future of Jewish life.However, I do believe that rather than remaining single, it is clearly preferable for single Jewish women in their mid-30s to marry non-Jewish men who are supportive of their spiritual journey and who will raise halachically recognized Jewish children.To not enthusiastically embrace this idea would mean that our community is not concerned about the happiness and self-fulfillment of many of its most committed members.Countless sermons have been wasted on this topic, and its specter has launched numerous fund-raising campaigns for institutions that usually have little clue on how to creatively adapt to a changing community.As a result, many of our Jewish leaders and even major philanthropists are finding that their grandchildren are not necessarily being raised Jewishly.

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