Monday, December 10, 2012

Spain Opens Door To Naturalization for Descendants of Sephardic Jews Who Fled Due to Inquisition

Posted by: Jan Meisels Allen

Five hundred and twenty years after the start of the Inquisition, Spain opened the door to descendants of Sephardic Jews whose ancestors had fled the Iberian Peninsula, forced, in order to live in Spain or its colonies, to choose between exile or conversion to Christianity. Spain officials have promised to speed up the naturalization process for Sephardic Jews who spread through the Diaspora--however, the offer is not simple according to Genie Milgrom, president of the JGS of Greater Miami who is quoted in the article in the New York Times and International Herald Tribune on Sunday December 9. 
 
The Federation of Jewish Communities in Spain told  the article's author, Doreen Carvajal, to be naturalized and become citizens, secular bnei anousim (descendants of anousim or crypto Jews)  Jewish applicants whose families had maintained double lives as Catholics must seek religious training and undergo formal conversion to Judaism. The Federation will screen and certify the Sephardic Jewish backgrounds of those who submit applications to obtain Spanish citizenship.
 
To read the article go to:  http://tinyurl.com/aw6pl7o
 
I don't know how long the article will be available at no cost past December 9.
 
Jan Meisels Allen
IAJGS Vice President
Chairperson, IAJGS Public Records Access Monitoring Committee

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