Finding a Rabbi or Cantor to Officiate at an Interfaith Wedding

Return to the Jewish Wedding Guide for Interfaith Couples.

Are you or is someone you know looking for Jewish clergy to officiate at an interfaith wedding? While some rabbis and cantors officiate at interfaith weddings, not all do. For some couples, finding clergy to officiate or co-officiate an interfaith wedding may be difficult, but it’s not impossible. With adequate time and patience, an officiant of quality can be found.

Wedding ceremony

For couples looking for Jewish clergy to officiate at their interfaith wedding, 18Doors can be an invaluable resource. Just go to our referral service and fill out the officiation request form.

If you need it, 18Doors will provide you with personalized assistance—by phone or email—and answer any questions you may have about interfaith weddings, clergy, etc.

You should be aware that many rabbis and cantors may have conditions for a couple to fulfill or consider prior to agreeing to officiate. For example, some rabbis and cantors may require one, or more than one, of the following to take place: a promise to raise any children the couple may have in the future as Jewish; enrollment in an introductory Judaism class beginning prior to the wedding—either for the partner who is not Jewish, or perhaps for both partners; no co-officiation with a clergy person from another faith tradition; a ceremony that does not occur in a place of worship of another religion; membership in the rabbi or cantor’s synagogue if they are affiliated with one.

Many rabbis and cantors who do not officiate at interfaith weddings (either because they choose not to do so or because the movement they belong to does not allow them to do so) will refer you to someone who does or lend a sympathetic ear and offer a welcome for you and your spouse-to-be into their community. No one Jewish officiant or even many officiants stand for their entire movement or affiliating associations and institutions.

Each Jewish movement has a different policy on intermarriage, so it is helpful to know what movement your desired rabbi or cantor hails from. Here is a summary of each movement’s policy on officiation at intermarriages:

  • Reconstructionist movement: The Reconstructionist movement leaves it up to the conscience of each rabbi whether or not to officiate at interfaith weddings. Reconstructionist rabbis are not permitted to co-officiate at interfaith weddings with clergy of another faith, although some do.
  • Reform movement: The CCAR (Central Conference of American Rabbis, to which Reform rabbis belong) discourages its members from officiating at interfaith weddings, but doesn’t forbid them from doing so. Many Reform rabbis and cantors will officiate at interfaith weddings, and a few will co-officiate with clergy of another faith.
  • Secular Humanistic Jewish movement: Nearly all Secular Humanistic rabbis and cantors will officiate at interfaith weddings. Many will co-officiate with clergy of another faith. Their tradition, however, is to offer a ceremony that has limited or no “God” references.
  • Conservative movement: Conservative rabbis and cantors are forbidden to officiate at interfaith weddings. If they officiate, they risk losing their membership in the Conservative rabbinical or cantorial association.
  • Orthodox and ultra-Orthodox movements: These rabbis and cantors are forbidden to officiate at an interfaith wedding.

An ordained rabbi, cantor, priest or minister qualifies to perform weddings under state, federal and many international legal systems. You should consult the courts of the jurisdiction you’re getting married in for restrictions and limitations on who may officiate at your wedding.


18Doors is here to support interfaith couples and families exploring Jewish life. We offer educational content; connections to welcoming organizations, professionals and programs; resources and trainings for organizations, clergy and other program providers; and our Rukin Rabbinic Fellowship provides offerings for couples in cities nationwide. If you have questions, please contact


Author: 18Doors