Burial and Inability to Convert

Question

If a person is profoundly disabled, physically and mentally, can they be converted to Judaism? Immersion in a mikvah and a course of study would both be impossible, but we wish to bury the person (who was adopted) in a Jewish cemetery with family.

6 months

Answers

  1. The Laws of conversion are such that immersion in the Mikveh and circumcision (for a man) are absolutely obligatory. That means that a person who is not able to immerse – for whatever the reason – cannot be converted.

    Can they be buried in a Jewish cemetery? In extenuating circumstances it might be possible to find a way to bury the person as close to his adoptive family as possible without their being buried in the cemetery grounds itself. It would require the ruling of a recognized authority in Jewish Law, and it would also require the cooperation of the burial society that is charge of the cemetery.

    Best wishes from the AskTheRabbi.org Team