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“I wasn’t marrying someone because of her religion.

I was marrying Sarah because she was who she was.” When they got engaged, both Sarah and Mike took interfaith marriage preparation classes, which helped with tough discussions they had about raising kids, celebrating holidays, and dealing with family dynamics.

While Richards’ Ohio hometown has three Catholic churches and a majority Christian populace, once she met Levy all her plans for a “nice Catholic boy” disappeared.

They plan to raise their children Catholic, but they both say their kids will be well aware of their Jewish heritage, and they were encouraged to raise them as such by Bline.

According to CARA, the highest rate of interfaith marriages took place in the 1970s and 1980s, when young Catholics dispersed from East Coast and Midwestern cities into areas of the country where there were fewer Catholic enclaves.

But as Ohio couple Richards and Levy illustrate, attraction and love can trump proximity to potential partners of the same faith.

It wasn’t until after they were married and the topic of children came up that Mike’s parents voiced their disagreement with how their grandchildren would be raised.

They also complained that the Jewish traditions had overshadowed the Catholic traditions at the Miles’ wedding.

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