Attending a Jewish ceremony

I can’t help but be curious about other religions. I’m in the army, and there’s a Jewish worship service on Fridays. Would it be a sin for me as a Catholic to attend? I figured since we worship the same God, it’d be OK.

Is it in Hebrew?

That is what I was thinking. Unless it is a Reform congregation it will likely be in Hebrew and you won’t understand it Pedro.

OTOH there are Latino Jews that converted to Catholicism during the inquisition that have been re-discovering their Jewish roots, many of them live in New Mexico and Texas. If you happen across such a congregation they may very well have services in Spanish.

There is a congregation like that only 35 miles away. But I don’t know Spanish and am more familiar with Ashkenasi so I have never been.

Hmm, it didn’t even occur to me that it’d be in Hebrew. The Jewish service is just listed among the many other services on base.

There are one or two verses in the traditional Jewish liturgy which would not apply to Christians; but, for the most part, I would think it is acceptable to Catholics. However, if the Jewish liturgy involves specific holy days such as Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, and Passover, I’m not so sure Catholics would want to participate although they may be able to attend. From the Jewish perspective, applicable I believe to all movements within Judaism, all are welcome.

If the service is Reform Judaism, it is either in English only or in both English and Hebrew.

I don’t think it would be sinful to attend in order to learn about the Jewish faith or to celebrate the bar mitzfa or a wedding of a friend or family member. There may some aspects I would not be comfortable participating in though.

Go ahead and attend. You are there to observe and learn. Part of the service may be in Hebrew but there is an English translation on the opposite page. The Rabbi will call out page numbers frequently. When people stand you stand and when they sit you sit. It is simple as that. The greeting for Friday night is Shabbat Shalom which means peaceful Sabbath. (BTW-The accent is on the second syllable in both words.) If someone says it to you just reply Shabbat Shalom or same to you.

I’m always curious how Jewish people who live in Israel view Catholics, my Jewish friends in the US are conservative and we never really get into the theological difference when we do they seem intrested because it is usually the first time they have heard it. I mean there are things we claim as Catholics that have to sound insane to a practicing Jew. I just remeber the time friend said wasn’t Jesus allegedly Jewish and my response was He was Jewish, He was the King of the Jews then there was the awkward pause and we never talked about it again. This is how I think Catholics view our Jewish Brothers and sisters, On the Tree of Life Christians are the grafted on branches and the Jewish people are the natural branches.

You can call the chaplain’s office and tell them you are interested in other religions and ask if they would mind if you attended the Jewish service on Friday. I think they would welcome you.

There is probably a box in the chapel with yarmulkes for people to borrow. Ask the chaplain’s aid when you call the office about this.

other up coming Jewish dates
Rosh Hashana services on Sept. 5 & 6.
Yom Kippur services on Sept 13 & 14

You can also speak with Father after Mass about attending. He probably works with the Jewish Chaplain on base as part of the Chaplain’s Corps.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit