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In high school, this decision proved to be mostly moot. I tried not to follow up on them at first, but I was frustrated and lonely and had finite willpower.

After one date, though, I would beat myself up mentally for breaking my rule, and I’d avoid making second dates.

“I would be interested how to see how many Jews who intermarry with Catholics attend synagogue,” says Crohn.

December, 2002 Reprinted with permission from the Forward.

When Jennifer signed on to JDate.com, an Internet service for Jewish singles, she had a certain guy in mind.

The 29-year-old school teacher, who asked that her full name not be used, said she's always been attracted to Jewish men who embody the stereotypical intellectual, neurotic, brooding, Woody Allen type.

"They're witty, they tend to read more," she said of Jewish men. They can be a little bit prone to depression." It's a story that can be told by the thousands of Jews who are logging on to dating sites in hopes of meeting other Jews--for friendships, dates, relationships and even marriage.

April, 2008 A recent landmark study of Americans' religious behavior confirmed what many observers of intermarriage have often suggested, but never proven: when Jews intermarry, they disproportionately marry Catholics. "This is something that everyone has known for years," says Rabbi Arthur Blecher, who noted the trend in last year's The New American Judaism: The Way Forward on Challenging Issues from Intermarriage to Jewish Identity. "Jews are concentrated in the Northeast, and so are Catholics," he says. I can't say that the Jews have any special affection for people who are Catholic." Melissa and Karl Simon of Reston, Va., are a case in point. Even with different religious backgrounds, "I think our families had the same values," says Melissa Simon.

Religion Landscape Survey conducted by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life, 39% of intermarried Jews are married to Catholics, even though Protestants outnumber Catholics in the U. Overall, slightly less than a third of all married Jews are intermarried. It is not as though the Jews are saying 'Gee, I would like to marry a Catholic…'" While no one has formally studied the question, sociologist Steven Cohen, a professor at New York's Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, boils the phenomenon down to one word: geography.

“For some couples, it is that religiosity that some people see as a conflict, but it often it is a bridge.” Traditional proximity between Jews and Catholics is a result of parallel immigration patterns, explains Rabbi Blecher.

A majority of the Jews--as well as a good number of the Catholics--in the United States are descendants of European immigrants who came to the United States in the early part of the 20th Century.

But Jennifer's screen name "Shiksa" (non-Jewish woman) tells a different story.

She counts herself among a special category of soul-mate seekers: gentiles who log on to Jewish singles sites in search of a Jewish mate.

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