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NaBloPoMo | Day 18: Religious Family History

Yesterday, I told you how my mother and I prepare for Family Functions. And I also explained that we have a lot of those around here because we celebrate both the Jewish and Catholic holidays.

And now I’m going to tell you why.

Anyone up for a quick family history?



Let’s start with my grandmother, my mother’s mother, Manga. She was an Italian Catholic lady. And she was totes amazeballs. All of my uncles, my cousins, and relatives on her side of the family are also Italian Catholic. Some of you might be familiar with them from home movies like this one. And I think a lot of you are even friends with my Aunt Lynda, on Facebook. Which, by the way, is hilarious to me.

Next, we had my grandfather, my mother’s father, Poppa Sye. He was born and raised Jewish. And when the two of them got married, back in the day, their interfaith wedding was a huge taboo.



Therefore, my mother, Pam, was raised with both religions and ideals. She was allowed to choose which religion she wanted to be when she grew up. And somewhere along the way, my mother eventually decided to embrace Judaism.

My brother, Adam, also commonly referred to as Abercrombie, was raised Jewish. He attended Hebrew school complete with having a Bar Mitzvah. And he’s raising his son, Mason, also known as MDW, Jewish.

I did not attend Hebrew school, or anything of the like. Mostly because, I was too busy touring with the Grateful Dead and hitchhiking across the country.

And maybe that’s why my own son, JCH, decided to become an atheist.




Later on in life, my mother married her high school sweetheart (my now stepfather – herein referred to as My Daddy).  He is what I like to call a ‘Pseudo-Jew’. And the best damn daddy that ever lived.

My dad, Ron, was born to our beloved, Gramma Ev and Poppa Ernie, and he was raised Italian Catholic. His whole side of family, including, Uncle Rick, whom y’all are familiar with, are all Italian Catholic.

However, my dad converted to Judaism in his previous marriage, and raised his son, my stepbrother, Lee, with the Jewish faith.





Confused yet?

Let me break it down a little more simply.

My mother, my father, both of my brothers, and both of their significant others, and all of their children, are Jewish, while the rest of my family is Catholic. And my son doesn’t believe in any religion whatsoever. And, well, neither do I, quite frankly. However, I do believe in G-d, or  a higher power, or whatever you want to call it. But more on that, another time.



Got it now?



And that’s why we get to party together, all year round!

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  • Nothing confusing about this at all. It just means a lot of celebrating a lot of the time. Which is awesome!

  • I love it! Sounds like you get to have the best of both worlds. 🙂

  • Lucy

    I have had time to get it LOL and I think it is great,love the way you guys respect each other and embrace it 🙂

  • I have said this before….I LOVE your family. You guys just seems so cohesive. You know one of the great benefits of all of you having been exposed to various religions and currently having different faiths (or not) is that you are tolerant of people that aren’t exactly like you. Wouldn’t our world be a better place if everyone was tolerant of each other. You guys are awesome.

  • HeSaidHisTelephoneNumberWas911

    Always an interesting story when you tell it. Diversity at it’s best, and most entertaining.

  • I couldn’t have said it better!

  • What Cheryl said. It is important to be tolerant of others who are different from you. Such different religious and cultural backgrounds make for a very interesting family tree. I am sure your family holidays are always fun-filled occasions. How could they not be! Thanks for sharing some of your family history with us.

  • Confusing and delightful. It doesn’t seem to matter much what religion your family is. They are loaded with love.

  • shadowrun300

    You definitely have Grandma and Grandpa to thank for your awesome family! Because they were so accepting of each other despite their beliefs, they were able to raise a family who was accepting of all people. Perhaps that’s why you all get along so well!
    Great story!! 🙂

  • I think I got it… Wow! No wonder you guys have so much to celebrate! My family is pretty much all of the same faith – practicing to varying degrees. And it’s probably best that we don’t have more reasons to get together than we do. Too much togetherness is not always a good thing for us!

  • Totes!

  • Its definitely fun. That’s for sure.

  • That’s how we do!

  • Yes, that would be awesome.
    And I say, it’s fine to believe in whatever the hell makes you happy.


  • 🙂

  • 🙂

  • Awww. Thank you!

  • True!


  • Why thank you.
    And I think you’re 100% right!

  • I totally understand that!


  • agg79

    Wow. That explains a lot. Sounds like you almost need a batting roster to keep track of all those names/relations. I can see where you get your outlook on life. And, FWIW, someone once told me: “I don’t care what you believe in, just believe in it.”

  • I like that motto. I like it a lot.

  • I got lost along the way but caught up at the end when you summed it all up. Very cool! The more diverse we are, the more alike we are. I love it! Happy Thanksgiving! I’m Jewish Agnostic btw. But I do believe in a higher power, and it might be dog.

  • Ahahahaha!

    You and I are on the same page!

  • ladyV

    i’m not confused only because i know, but if didn’t know i would be totally confused but i am not because i know what i know, you know?

  • I do!

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