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You’ll find much better inclusion outside of Orthodox Judaism

Ephraim Becker

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
I finally went into a conservative synagogue and davened there and felt very accepted. The Rabbi walked me part of the way home since I walked all the way to Woodmere from Far Rockaway and had a very nice conversation with him. I tried the Orthodox minyan downstairs first but I got extremely uncomfortable when a special needs person that very likely has autism quickly walked away from me and ignored me when I started talking about my autism and asked about other people with autism. That person was saying Good Shabbos to everyone he saw but ignored me all because I talked about autism. This was actually a modern orthodox synagogue. I couldn’t take it anymore and went upstairs to the Traditional Conservative minyan where I was very welcome there. There was even someone my age that I shook hands with and said Shabbat Sholom to him after the prayer service. People in conservative synagogues actually know what autism really is and have fully fledged inclusion within the synagogue itself, unlike orthodoxy, which has not-so-committed special needs programs with somewhat inclusion where I have to go out of my way for. I got my fourth aliyah there Shabbat morning and the Rabbi said on the microphone right before my aliyah “I would like to introduce you to Ephraim Becker who’s joining us today for services and that you shouldn’t hesitate to go over to him“. Never have I had such acceptance before in my life. Yachad is probably the most or it’s said to be the most inclusive environment but I have to go out of my way for it and I’ve never really been included in anything there. In fact, people gave me a hard time in the high school, called IVDU Upper School, and Camp Chaverim for talking about my autism. Orthodox people frown upon mental and developmental health and I just have to accept that.

P.S: That Modern Orthodox minyan downstairs the people there said they accept everyone.


You know, that one lady we met that one time.
V.I.P Member
Ephraim, I am so sorry that you've had such a hard time. I know you are hurting deeply, and you feel alone. But I would rephrase the title, because there is so much antisemitism already among people unfamiliar with the faith.

I'm Messianic Jewish. Which means I've been to a number of not only Temples, but Churches as well. Also, I wasn't always Messianic, nor was I a religious Jew either- which means I've attended many non-Abrahamic religious services as well. I learned that each house of worship, even within the same denomination, has its own culture and traditions. Some congregations, regardless of faith, are really uptight, and make anyone different feel very unwelcoming, while others are loving and inclusive, but most, due to flawed human nature (which I possess as well), are somewhere in the middle.

And each congregant is an individual with their own personality, likes and dislikes, and baggage. So, it's likely not Orthodoxy as a whole, it might just be individuals within that congregation. People are going to react unexpectedly, and constantly miss the mark in every relationship. It's one of the only things guaranteed in life.

I'm glad you had a nice time at that new shul. I hope you find a faith community where you feel welcomed and at peace. It's important for all of us.

Let's both, in our search for belonging, focus on the worship and love of HaShem, striving each day to find a way to welcome and love everyone on life's path, while searching ourselves to repair the places where we have screwed up, and cultivate gratitude for all that we have been given.
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Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
I had a similar experience !,with Roman Catholic nuns, in a servite convent\respite home for terminally ill people,I wouldn't go into or near Roman Catholicism ever again now, felt very accepted at an assembly of God church, by some of the members,I wasn't as obviously autistic at a messianic service, but they were still kind, go where its right for you^-^

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