Friday, February 12, 1999

Marrying a Kohen: Jewish Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse and Sexual Assault

Marrying a Kohen
Jewish Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse and Sexual Assault 
(alt.: Kohain, Kohan, Cohen, Kohen)
(pl. "Kohanim" or "Cohanim")

The Awareness Center has a call out for articles on Halachic information on Survivors of Sexual Violence (childhood sexual abuse, sexual assault, rabbinical sexual misconduct) marrying Kohains. This is an extremely sensitive issue, and one that keeps coming up.  If you know of an article or would like to submit one that you have written please use the following link to submit an article.

Disclaimer: Inclusion in this website does not constitute a recommendation or endorsement. Individuals must decide for themselves if the resources meet their own personal needs.

Table of Contents:  

  1. Definition of a Kohen (see below)
  2. Can I Marry A Kohan? (2004)
  3. Question: How does being sexually molested affect a girl's later ability to marry a Cohen?
  4. Rabbis: Couple must divorce  (02/12/1999)

Also see: 

Definition of a Kohen
A Jewish male is considered a Kohen if he is a descendent of the first priest Aaron, the High Priest, the brother of Moses (Moshe), from the Levi tribe.

His task is to work in the Temple, be involved with the offering of sacrifices, and with Blessing the Congregation of Israel.  Kohen's recite the Priestly Blessing, and are first to be called up (given an aliyah) to read from the Torah.

To maintain a high degree of purity, Kohanim observed certain prohibitions concerning marriage and contact with the deceased.  Kohanim are also prohibited from marrying a divorced woman, convert, incest and rape survivors.  They are also prohibited from visiting a cemetery (except for immediate family members) or coming into contact with the dead.


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