As someone who isn’t Jewish, I can relate to your worries over not knowing what’s going on in synagogue services. However, as a veteran of many years of accompanying my Jewish wife and kids to temple, I am here to tell you that you have nothing to fear. In fact, you have something to look forward to.
The main reason to go to services is to be with your fiancée and keep her company. It can be lonely for her to go to temple by herself. I’m willing to bet that surrounding herself with family makes the services a lot more meaningful to her. In addition, the oneg after services on Friday night can be a great way to meet other couples like you.
Not only does your fiancée need your support at services, but your future children will, too. As their dad, you will want to be involved in everything they do (trust me on this). This includes their religious education. Going to temple with my family has created some of my fondest memories.
If someone had told me before they were born that I’d want to be this involved, I never would have believed it. Now that they’re in their late teens, I’m very grateful to have had the opportunity. It’s not something I had to do; it’s something that I got to do.
Jim Keen is the author of “Inside Intermarriage: A Christian Partner’s Perspective on Raising a Jewish Family.” He has been in an interfaith relationship for 28 years, and has been an active participant with his wife in raising their two Jewish daughters. They live in Ann Arbor, Michigan where Jim teaches in the Ann Arbor Public Schools.