Jews wrestle with pork

By LAURA MCCANDLISH  |  January 30, 2013

Rachel Connelly, a professor of economics at Bowdoin College (full disclosure: a colleague of my husband), occupies a complex middle path. Her family (including son Martin of Little Red Cup Tea Co.) keeps "modified kosher." Shellfish is in, but pork is out; no exceptions. They consume no leavening or forbidden grains during Passover, but a shrimp sandwich without bread would be fine then. These food choices remind Connelly she is Jewish and "that brings with it a set of obligations and joys." For many still, abstaining from pork (like fasting on Yom Kippur) is the clearest way to mark to the world they are Jews. It's about staying connected to the traditions of your ancestors, something larger than yourself.

Portland's Jewish leaders are holding a panel on "Different Ways to Observe Jewish Dietary Laws" at Temple Beth El, 400 Deering Ave, Portland, on Tuesday, April 9 @ 7 pm.

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