The temple practices the least strict form of Judaism, Dershowitz said, meaning many members aren’t kosher. That includes her. She eats whatever she wants, just like she did growing up in New York.
Being Jewish in New York was much easier, though, she said, because the Jewish population is much larger.
She attended a Jewish preschool, and even public schools were off for major Jewish holidays. Here, she spends a lot of time explaining what she believes. People in the community don’t seem to know anything about the religion, she said.
“We believe that the messiah has not yet come to the Earth,” she said. “We believe that Jesus was a rabbi, not the messiah.”
Their Sabbath is Friday night through Saturday, not Sunday like in Christianity.
Their holy book is the Torah. It’s written in Hebrew on scrolls. There’s a particular way to carry it, and it can’t touch the ground, she said.
Judaism relies heavily on traditions.
“There’ve been traditions passed down for generations,” she said.
One tradition might be tough for her to stick to if she stays in Indiana for too long.
“My parents want me to marry a Jew,” she said. “That’s next to impossible here.”
Hailey Alexander, 24, and her husband were raised with different religious beliefs.
She grew up in a Christian church. His family had no religious beliefs at all. The two of them are trying to find a church they can attend together.
The problem is they both feel comfortable in different settings. He prefers worshipping at mega churches with loud praise bands. She prefers smaller, more intimate churches that focus more on spreading the word of God.
As a result, she still has no church home and hasn’t attended services recently.