Freedom of Marriage World Map

Facts, Figures and Personal Stories

  • Shlomi and Lior's StoryShlomi and Lior's Story

    When I met Lior, my partner, we didn't know much about the institution of the Chief Rabbinate of Israel and the process of getting married in the State of Israel. After taking a course in family law as part of my law degree program, we decided unequivocally that we would not honor the Rabbinate with our signatures. Yes, this raised a number of eyebrows, and we faced the slightest social pressure, but in the end, with the support of most of our family, we arranged an amazing Jewish wedding ceremony, which we wrote ourselves.

    Oct 15th, 2017

  • Adi's storyAdi's story

    It was clear to me, long before I met my beloved, that I was not going to get married through the Chief Rabbinate of Israel. Every step of this process seems utterly humiliating to me - the lies that must be told to the rabbis about our secular way of life, the immersion in the ritual bath in front of a stranger, the signing of the marriage contract in which my father and my husband decide how much money they are exchanging for me, and finally the wedding ceremony itself with my face covered and lips sealed.

    Oct 15th, 2017

  • Shlomo's StoryShlomo's Story

    Here is a question: if we were to learn that a business discriminates against a group of people - for example, black people, Arabs, Jews, or... women - would we want to buy something from it or support it, directly or indirectly? So how is that a wedding under the auspices of Israel's Rabbinate, which discriminates against women at every turn, is something that everybody finds acceptable?

    Jul 16th, 2017

  • Galit's StoryGalit's Story

    Remember when we were kids and they told us that if a boy puts a ring on your finger with witnesses around, and says, "Behold you are sanctified unto me..." ... that that would be all you need to get married??

    This is the story of the wedding we chose for ourselves - an independent wedding - it being our right and responsibility to establish our life together in an independent way.

    We are Galit and Elad. We are both in the second chapter of our lives, and together we have six children - Elad has three, and I have three.

    Nov 28th, 2016

  • Yochi and Yoni's StoryYochi and Yoni's Story

    Why we chose not to get married via the Chief Rabbinate of Israel:

    When Yoni, my husband, proposed marriage to me, it was one of the happiest days of my life, and of his life. We celebrated with family and friends, and only after several days did we begin to think about the wedding itself.

    It took us a while to find a hall; I had to search numerous sites and designers to find the dress of my dreams; but there was one thing we didn't go back and forth over: we knew that we did not want to marry via Israel's Chief Rabbinate.

    Nov 21st, 2016

  • Shachaf's StoryShachaf's Story

    Our wedding, our way - by Shachaf Dreyfuss

    It's so great that David Ben-Gurion signed the "status quo" agreement with the Orthodox Jews who were in Israel [back then] in order to settle the mess we call "the relationship between religion and state." What [on earth] would we do without this agreement?

    Well, we would probably all do whatever we preferred to do, without bothering anybody else. But, oh well, the tendency of politics to come at the expense of pluralism and liberalism is nothing new.

    Sep 21st, 2016

  • The number of unmarried couples living together up by 29%The number of unmarried couples living together up by 29%

    Over the course of two years, the number of unmarried couples living together in Israel increased dramatically by 28%, or nearly 20,000 couples. During this same period, the number of Jewish couples who got married in Israel fell by 6.5%. These are the findings of Hiddush's analysis of Central Bureau of Statistics data.


    Aug 28th, 2016

  • Hiddush presents: Marriage freedom by the numbersHiddush presents: Marriage freedom by the numbers

    Hiddush released its new presentation titled, 'Marriage Freedom in Israel: by the Numbers,' which provides answers to the questions most often asked about the condition of marriage freedom in Israel, and related issues. Shahar Ilan, the Hiddush VP of Research and Information, presented the data at the meeting of the Knesset's Peoplehood, Religion, & State Caucus.

    Jan 13th, 2016

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