Religious issues complicate adoption

Religion and adoption are both, at core, about identity. Increasingly, religious issues are complicating adoption. That’s because of the increase in international and interfaith adoptions, adoptions between races and adoptions by singles and gay couples. At the same time, a significant proportion of adoption agencies are faith-based, which has led to conflicts between some groups’ teachings on homosexuality and state discrimination laws.


Adoption trends

The story of adoption in the U.S. today is the story of a revolution that touches culture, demographics, faith, race relations and identity, says Adam Pertman, former Boston Globe journalist who heads the Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute in New York. Adoption trends include:

  • Researchers and leaders in the field are stressing the importance of placing children with adoptive and foster families of the same race if possible.
  • Interracial, intercultural and interreligious adoptions are increasing, creating a need for more training and religious and cultural sensitivity on the part of adoptive families and potentially creating identity conflicts and issues for adoptees.
  • Because many older children – many of them African-American or mixed-race – need homes, agencies have opened doors to adoptive parents not previously considered “suitable”: single parents, gays and lesbians, transracial couples, people of modest means, renters and working couples. For parents who are not affluent, adoption from foster care has been the route for some time.
  • International adoptions are increasing, creating the potential for profound identity issues for parents, children and young adult adoptees.
  • Faith communities – particularly European-Jewish congregations -find themselves facing identity questions as they embrace African-American, Asian and Latino adoptees. Pertman, noting implications for the age-old debate about who is a Jew, says he has seen Chinese cultural festivals in synagogues to support the large number of infants adopted from China.
  • An increase in infertility and the lessening of the stigma of single parenthood have resulted in fewer infants available for adoption.
  • Many believe that adoption is remaking the definition of family and redefining parenthood, and there are an increasing number of scholars studying it.
  • Today birth mothers, rather than agencies, more often choose the families who receive their children. The result is a diminished – though not the elimination – role of religion in placement. Previously, birth mothers relinquished babies to agencies, often religious agencies, which selected the adoptive families according to religious criteria.
  • Openness is the trend, to a greater or lesser degree. That means involving birth parents more. In a completely “open” adoption, birth families retain a relationship with adopted children. Open-records laws vary by state.
  • Religious institutions have played a central role in caring for orphans and finding homes for them since the 1800s. At the same time, some religious groups have at times promoted shame and secrecy through efforts to reinforce moral lessons about marriage and sexual mores, by identifying with more affluent, mostly white adoptive families and by disempowering birth parents, who are more likely than adoptive parents to be single, poor and/or immigrant. Faith organizations and congregations are still big players in the adoption world. They help relinquishing parents place their children and give them support during the pregnancy. They recruit adoptive and foster families and give them support and mentoring. They create their own social service agencies or work with other adoption agencies, and they lobby for just and humane adoption laws and policies.


  • According to 2010 estimates by the Census Bureau, there are nearly 1.6 million adopted children in the United States.
  • The Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute posts a page with facts and statistics about adoption. Between 1971 and 2001, over a quarter-million children – most of them infants and most from Asia – were adopted from other countries where war, poverty, social upheaval and (in China) family planning rules contributed to an increase in orphans.
  • The Child Welfare Information Gateway (formerly the National Adoption Information Clearinghouse and the National Clearinghouse on Child Abuse and Neglect Information) has data on adoption.


Gay and lesbian adoption

According to Lifelong Adoptions, there were 110,000 children living with gay and lesbian couples in 2012. State laws on civil unions, same-sex marriage and anti-discrimination laws have forced some religious groups to stop offering adoption services.

Interfaith adoption

  • is a resource supporting interfaith couples exploring Jewish life and inclusive Jewish communities. They offer educational content; connections to welcoming organizations, professionals and programs; resources and trainings for organizations, clergy and other program providers. Contact CEO Edmund Case or director of content and educational resources Benjamin Maron.

    They have an article archive on adoption in interfaith families.

  • Ruth Nemzoff

    Ruth Nemzoff is a resident scholar at Brandeis University’s Women’s Studies Research Center. She was formerly New Hampshire’s deputy commissioner of health and welfare and the former assistant minority leader of the New Hampshire legislature.

    Her primary expertise regards intermarriage in the conservative Jewish movement, and she can discuss adoption and the Jewish community. She is an adoptive grandmother.

Transracial adoption

  • National Indian Child Welfare Association

    The National Indian Child Welfare Association (NICWA) is a national voice for American Indian children and families. They are a comprehensive source of information on American Indian child welfare and the only national American Indian organization focused specifically on the tribal capacity to prevent child abuse and neglect. Sarah Kastelic is the executive director.

    They have information on American Indian child welfare, adoptions, foster care and family issues.

  • National Association of Black Social Workers

    The National Association of Black Social Workers is one of the foremost advocacy groups that addresses social issues and concerns of the Black community. Melanie Bryant is the National Office Director.

    Faced with the knowledge that African-American children have the poorest adoption placement rate, the NABSW operates an adoption exchange that helps place African-American children needing families with black families. Their site includes a list of black adoption agencies and programs in the states.

Embryo adoption

In connection with the effort to discourage stem cell research, some Christians are promoting the adoption (and gestation and birth) of unused frozen embryos created through infertility treatments. Donation to stem cell research is one way of disposing of the “extra” embryos.

  • Embryo Adoption Awareness Center

    The Embryo Adoption Awareness Center was established in 2007 by Nightlight® Christian Adoptions after receiving a grant award from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services specifically to increase awareness regarding embryo donation and adoption as a family building option.

  • National Embryo Donation Center

    The National Embryo Donation Center (NEDC) is a non-profit organization which strives to protect human embryos by promoting, facilitating and educating about embryo donation and adoption. Email through the website.

    Contact: 865-777-2013.

Laws and legal resources

One powerful discussion about adoption is the conversation between adoption organizations that urge sealing adoption records in the interests of birth-parent privacy and those advocates – including many adoptees and some birth-family members – of opening sealed court records and “open” adoption, in which records never are sealed. In 1998, Oregon voters passed the nation’s first open-records law that allows adoptees who are 21 or older access to their birth certificates.

  • FindLaw – Adoption

    FindLaw has a section completely devoted to adoption with background information as well as laws regarding adoption across the country.

  • Adoption and Safe Families Act

    The U.S. Adoption and Safe Families Act was passed by Congress and signed into law in 1997.

  • Legal Information Institute

    The Legal Information Institute at Cornell University Law School is a not-for-profit group that believes everyone should be able to read and understand the laws that govern them, without cost. They provide free access to the law online and create materials to help people understand the law. Thomas R. Bruce directs the Institute.

    Their website lists statutes governing adoption by state.

  • American Adoption Congress

    The American Adoption Congress is comprised of individuals, families and organizations committed to adoption reform. They provide education about the lifelong process of adoption and advocate legislation that will grant every individual access to information about his or her family and heritage. Amy Winn serves as president.

    The AAC maintains a page with information about legislation in each state related to birth record access.

  • Child Welfare Information Gateway

    Child Welfare Information Gateway, a service of the Children’s Bureau, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, promotes the safety, permanency, and well-being of children, youth and families by connecting child welfare, adoption, and related professionals as well as the general public to information, resources, and tools covering topics on child welfare, child abuse and neglect, out-of-home care, adoption and more.

    The Gateway’s resources include the ability to search for state statutes on adoption as well as access The National Foster Care & Adoption Directory which can be searched by state for agencies, organizations and support groups.

Other background and resources

  • The Annie E. Casey Foundation

    The Annie E. Casey Foundation is a private charitable organization, dedicated to helping build better futures for disadvantaged children in the United States. Contact senior communications manager Beau Boughamer.

    The Foundation has a section devoted to adoption.

Other articles and publications

National sources

  • Sarah-Vaughan Brakman

    Sarah-Vaughan Brakman is associate professor of philosophy at Villanova University in Villanova, Pa., where she served as founding director of the Ethics Program from 1999-2004. She co-edited The Ethics of Embryo Adoption and the Catholic Tradition: Moral Arguments, Economic Reality and Social Analysis.

  • David Brodzinsky

    David Brodzinsky is a research and project director at the Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute in Oakland, Calif. He is an expert on the psychology of adoption in children, adoption research, interracial adoption, adoption outcomes, foster care, stress and coping in children, developmental psychopathology and divorce and child custody issues. He co-edited The Psychology of Adoption (with Marshall D. Schechter) and co-wrote Being Adopted: The Lifelong Search for Self (with Schechter and Robin Marantz Henig).

  • Linda S. Spears

    Linda S. Spears is the vice president of the Child Welfare League of America. She has been a social worker, manager and agency head and is a former director of field support for the Massachusetts Department of Social Services. An enrolled member of the Narragansett Indian Tribe, she is expert on issues of Indian child welfare. Among topics she can discuss are legal and bureaucratic issues, foster care and out-of-home placement, family preservation, child protection, adoption and cultural sensitivity. Contact her through Joyce Johnson.

  • Howard Alstein

    Howard Altstein is a professor in the University of Maryland School of Social Work with an expertise in adoption.

    He has investigated interracial and intercountry adoption and has written about family preservation programs, marriage and divorce. He is conversant in all topics related to adoption, including single-parent, gay and lesbian and embryo adoptions. He studied white parents and nonwhite (mostly black) adoptees from 1968 to 1991. The study is described in Adoption, Race and Identity: From Infancy to Young Adulthood.

  • Shay Bilchik

    Shay Bilchik is a research professor and the founder and director of the Center for Juvenile Justice Reform at Georgetown University’s Public Policy Institute. From 2000-2007 he served as president and CEO of the Child Welfare League of America. Before that, he was administrator of the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.

    He can discuss the controversies and his agency’s and the nation’s history and policies regarding cross-racial adoptions.

  • Michael Broyde

    Michael Broyde is a professor of law and senior fellow in the Center for the Study of Law and Religion at Emory University in Atlanta. He edited the book Marriage, Sex and Family in Judaism.

    He wrote the chapter, “Adoption, Personal Status and Jewish Law” in The Morality of Adoption: Social-Psychological, Theological and Legal Perspectives.

  • Ram A. Cnaan

    Ram A. Cnaan is a leading expert on faith-based social services and the chair of the doctoral program in social welfare at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. He wrote the article “Defining Who Is a Volunteer: Conceptual and Empirical Considerations” for the journal Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly (1996). He is also director of the Program for Religion and Social Policy Research and co-author of The Invisible Caring Hand: American Congregations and the Provision of Welfare.

    He has said that many faith-based organizations that deliver social services – such as adoption services — are looking at how their religious values are reflected in their social work, particularly when there is a conflict between government nondiscrimination policies and a faith’s teachings.

  • Ellen Herman

    Ellen Herman is a professor of contemporary American history at the University of Oregon and the creator of the Adoption History Project. She is the author of Kinship by Design: A History of Adoption in the Modern United States, which examines the history of modern adoption.

    She can discuss religion and adoption, the history of efforts to regulate adoption, adoption and the welfare state and scientific and social theories as they apply to adoption in the U.S. The fierce controversy surrounding religious matching in adoption a century ago has largely been displaced, she says, by similar debates about the significance of race, ethnicity and nation in family-making.

  • Marianna Novy

    Marianne Novy is a professor of English and women’s studies at the University of Pittsburgh. She wrote Reading Adoption: Family and Differences in Fiction and Drama, a book about adoption themes in literature.

    She has taught a graduate course on the literature of adoption and is founding co-chairwoman of the Alliance for the Study of Adoption and Culture.

  • Adam Pertman

    Adam Pertman is the executive director of the Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute in New York City. He wrote Adoption Nation: How the Adoption Revolution is Transforming America.

    A journalist and an adoptive father, Pertman was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize for his writing in The Boston Globe on the subject.

  • Timothy Jackson

    Timothy Jackson, professor of Christian ethics at Emory University’s Candler School of Theology in Atlanta, focuses on moral philosophy and theology, especially the relationship between secular and Christian conceptions of goodness, justice and mercy. He has written about altruism.

    He edited The Morality of Adoption: Social-Psychological, Theological and Legal Perspectives.

  • Ingrid Mattson

    Ingrid Mattson holds the London and Windsor Community Chair in Islamic Studies at Huron University College at Western University in London, Ontario, where she studies Islamic ethics, Muslim women and Christian-Muslim relations. She previously taught at Hartford Seminary in Connecticut, where she developed the first accredited graduate program for Muslim chaplains in the U.S.


    He wrote “Adoption and Fostering: Overview,” an article in the Encyclopedia of Women & Islamic Cultures, Volume II: Family, Law and Politics.

International and transracial adoption

  • Karen Balcom

    Karen Balcom is an assistant professor of history and women’s studies at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. She is an expert on historical aspects of adoption up to the 1960s, including the history of social welfare policy in the U.S. and Canada and women’s reform networks. She wrote “‘Phony Mothers’ and Border-Crossing Adoptions: The Montreal-to-New York Black Market in Babies in the 1950s,” an article in the May 2007 Journal of Women’s History, about a black-market baby ring operating between Canada and the U.S.

  • Karen Dubinsky

    Karen Dubinsky is a professor of history of gender and sexuality, history of tourism, transnational/transracial adoption 
and the global politics of childhood at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario.

  • Marilyn Holt

    Marilyn Holt is a historian of American orphanages and an expert on the history of American Indian adoption. She wrote Indian Orphanages and The Orphan Trains: Placing Out in America.

  • Heather Jacobson

    Heather Jacobson is assistant professor of sociology and anthropology at the University of Texas at Arlington. Her interests include sociology of families, the intersection of social inequality (race, class, gender) and families and family formation.

  • Randall L. Kennedy

    Randall L. Kennedy is the Michael R. Klein Professor of Law at Harvard Law School. He wrote Interracial Intimacies: Sex, Marriage, Identity and Adoption, an examination of the role of race in those arenas.

  • Trish Maskew

    Trish Maskew teaches adoption law, policy and practice at American University Washington College of Law. She founded Ethica, an adoption advocacy organization that works for ethical adoption practices internationally. She wrote Our Own: Adopting and Parenting the Older Child.

  • Rachel Wegner

    Rachel Wegner is the president of Ethica, an adoption advocacy organization that works for ethical adoption practices internationally.

  • Sandra Patton-Imani

    Sandra Patton-Imani, an adoptee, is an associate professor of American studies in the Department for the Study of Culture and Society at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa. She is the author of Birth Marks: Transracial Adoption in Contemporary America, in which black and multiracial adoptees discuss their experiences.

  • Dorothy E. Roberts

    Dorothy E. Roberts is the George A. Weiss University Professor of Law and Sociology and the Raymond Pace and Sadie Tanner Mossell Alexander Professor of Civil Rights at the University of Pennsylvania Law School.

    She wrote Killing the Black Body: Race, Reproduction and the Meaning of Liberty and is expert on the subject of African-Americans and adoption. Her areas of expertise include the effects of child welfare agency involvement in African-American neighborhoods. She cites federal data to show that, even when families have the same problems and characteristics, black children are most likely to be placed in foster care.

  • Rita Simon

    Rita Simon is university professor emerita of justice, law and society for the School of Public Affairs at American University in Washington, D.C. She wrote the book Abortion: Statutes, Policies and Public Attitudes the World Over (Praeger Publishers, 1998).

    She and sociologist Howard Altstein studied white parents and nonwhite (mostly black) adoptees from 1968 to 1991. The study is described in Adoption, Race & Identity: From Infancy to Young Adulthood. With Rhonda Roorda, she co-wrote In Their Own Voices: Transracial Adoptees Tell Their Stories and In Their Parents’ Voices: Reflections on Raising Transracial Adoptees, in-depth interviews with 24 adult transracial adoptees and parents. With Heather Ahn-Redding, Simon co-wrote Intercountry Adoptees Tell Their Stories, about Asian and Hispanic adoptees. With Sarah Hernandez, she co-wrote Native American Transracial Adoptees Tell Their Stories. Simon concludes that transracial adoption is a better option than foster care or institutions when adoption within one’s race is not possible. That recommendation is less controversial today than it would have been a in decades past, she has said.


  • American Academy of Adoption Attorneys

    The American Academy of Adoption Attorneys is a national association of approximately 340 attorneys who practice, or have otherwise distinguished themselves, in the field of adoption law. The Academy’s work includes promoting the reform of adoption laws and disseminating information on ethical adoption practices.

  • Elizabeth Bartholet

    Elizabeth Bartholet is a law professor at Harvard University and faculty director of the school’s Child Advocacy Program, which she founded in the fall of 2004. She has taught civil rights and family law, specializing in child welfare, adoption and reproductive technology. She wrote Family Bonds: Adoption and the Politics of Parenting.

  • Naomi R. Cahn

    Naomi R. Cahn is a professor at George Washington University Law School in Washington, D.C., where she has taught family law, trusts and estates. She is an expert on adoption law. She co-edited (with Joan Heifetz Hollinger) Families by Law: An Adoption Reader.

  • Joan Heifetz Hollinger

    Joan Heifetz Hollinger is the John and Elizabeth Boalt Lecturer in Residence at the University of California, Berkeley, Boalt Hall School of Law. She is a scholar of adoption law, including the Indian Child Welfare Act, and of psychosocial aspects of adoptive family relationships. She is an advocate of adoption law reform and has served on the U.S. State Department advisory group on intercountry adoption. She was the principal editor and author of the three-volume Adoption Law and Practice and wrote the American Bar Association guide to the Multiethnic Placement Act, and she co-edited (with Naomi Cahn) Families by Law: An Adoption Reader.

  • Elizabeth Samuels

    Elizabeth Samuels is a professor at the University Baltimore School of Law. Her areas of expertise include child and family law/adoption, constitutional law and Supreme Court seminar.

  • Stephen Presser

    Stephen Presser is Raoul Berger Professor of Legal History at Northwestern School of Law. His areas of expertise include business associations and legal history.

    He wrote the chapter, “Law, Christianity and Adoption” in The Morality of Adoption: Social-Psychological, Theological and Legal Perspectives.

  • Barbara Yngvesson

    Barbara Yngvesson is a professor emerita of anthropology at Hampshire College in Amherst, Mass., where she is also the former Dean of the School of Social Science and founding director of the interdisciplinary Program in Culture, Brain, and Development. Her interests include the cultural study of law, family and kinship; theories of identity and belonging; and transnational migration (with a focus on transnational families and international adoption).

    She has used National Science Foundation grants to study the transnational market in children, especially on the flow of adoptable children from Asia and Latin America to Sweden and the United States. She has also researched adult adoptee experiences of identity and belonging in transracial/transnational adoptions and is interested in the implications for theories of identity in anthropology and psychology.

    Contact: 413-549-4600.


  • U.S. Children’s Bureau

    The U.S. Children’s Bureau was a federal investigative agency created by Congress in 1912, as an outgrowth of national campaigns to reduce infant mortality and child labor and of baby-farming and black-market adoption scandals. It advocated standards in placement and state adoption laws, and it held the first conferences on child welfare. Today the organization is a bureau of the Administration for Children & Families at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is responsible for administering federal child welfare programs. Contact one of the 10 regional offices across the country.

    Contact: 202-401-4802.

Secular advocacy organizations

  • Child Welfare League of America

    The Child Welfare League of America in Arlington, Va., is a coalition of hundreds of private and public member agencies and a leader in the national child welfare movement, beginning with efforts to abolish orphanages in the 1920s and ’30s. The organization also is a center for information about cultural and racial diversity, including efforts to address the disproportionate number of minority children in the child welfare system. The CWLA’s Parent Resources for Information, Development and Education (PRIDE) program finds and supports foster and adoptive families.

  • Pact

    Pact is a national nonprofit that provides education and adoption service to children of color, their birth parents and their adoptive parents. Beth Hall is the founder and executive director.

  • Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute

    The Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute, founded in 1996, is a national not-for-profit organization devoted to improving adoption policy and practice. They Institute has offices in New York and Boston. April Dinwoodie is the executive director.

  • Bastard Nation

    Bastard Nation is known for militant advocacy of adoptees’ right to information about legal and genetic background as a civil right. Contact through the form on their website.

    Contact: 614-641-0294.
  • Concerned United Birthparents

    Concerned United Birthparents, based in California, began as a support group for birth parents and other birth family members. The group promotes open adoption records and family searches, proposes that most adoptions can and should be prevented and helps some families keep their children when they’re considering adoption because of financial stress. Contact Sarah Burns.

Faith-based adoption organizations

Regional sources

In the Northeast

  • Lisa Sowle Cahill

    Lisa Sowle Cahill is a professor of theology at Boston College who has written about genetics from a Christian perspective. Her books include Theological Bioethics: Participation, Justice and Change and Bioethics and the Common Good.

    She wrote the chapter, “Adoption: A Roman Catholic Perspective” in The Morality of Adoption: Social-Psychological, Theological and Legal Perspectives.

  • Craig Hickman

    Craig Hickman is a representative in the Maine House of Representatives. He is also a poet, actor, dancer, activist and educator.

    His 2005 memoir, Fumbling Toward Divinity: The Adoption Scriptures, chronicles Hickman’s five-year search for his family of origin and its aftermath. He says adoption is a spiritual journey.

  • Christina Groark

    Christina Groark is an expert in early-childhood development who teaches psychology in education department at the University of Pittsburgh.

    She is focused on improving conditions in orphanages around the world.

  • Carol Singley

    Carol Singley is a professor of English and director of undergraduate liberal studies at Rutgers University-Camden. She co-founded the Alliance for the Study of Adoption, Identity and Kinship and an associate at the university’s Center for Children and Childhood Studies.

    She has taught American literature and culture, narrative feminist theory and childhood studies. She is the adoptive mother of two children through open adoption and has written articles and books on the subject. She has examined adoption narratives from the 17th to the 20th centuries along with the history of adoption through American literature. She can discuss issues of adoption in the work of Cotton Mather, Benjamin Franklin, Mark Twain, Louisa May Alcott and Harriet Beecher Stowe.

In the South

  • Emily Hipchen

    Emily Hipchen is the coordinator of creative writing in the department of English and philosophy at the University of West Georgia in Carrollton, Ga. Her interests include adoption life writing, autobiography, creative nonfiction and British literature. She has taught her students about writing the autobiography of their adoption story as part of her teaching. She wrote Coming Apart Together: Fragments From an Adoption.

  • Julie Berebitsky

    Julie Berebitsky is a professor of history and director of the women’s studies program at Sewanee: The University of the South, in Sewanee, Tenn. She is the author of Like Our Very Own: Adoption and the Changing Culture of Motherhood, 1851-1950 and has contributed to a number of anthologies on adoption.

  • Susan Bordo

    Susan Bordo is a professor of English and gender and women’s studies and holds the Otis A. Singletary Chair in the Humanities at the University of Kentucky. She is an adoptive mother and a feminist writer and philosopher whose work explores cultural, political and personal notions of the body. She wrote Unbearable Weight: Feminism, Western Culture and the Body. She lectures widely on adoption.

  • Jeanne Stevenson-Moessner

    The Rev. Jeanne Stevenson-Moessner is a professor of pastoral care at Southern Methodist University’s Perkins School of Theology in Dallas. Her teaching specialties include issues in practical theology, pastoral care of women, crisis ministry, pastoral self-care, family systems theory and adoption. She wrote The Spirit of Adoption: At Home in God’s Family. She is an ordained Presbyterian minister.

  • Andrew Billingsley

    Andrew Billingsley is a professor of sociology and African-American studies at the University of South Carolina in Columbia and senior scholar-in-residence at the university’s Institute for Families in Society.

    He wrote (with Jeanne M. Giovannoni) Children of the Storm: Black Children and American Child Welfare, and he is an expert on interracial adoption and African-American adoption. He studies African-American families and community life and the institution of the black church.

In the Midwest

  • Catherine Rymph

    Catherine Rymph is an associate professor of history at the University of Missouri. Her areas of focus are recent history and women’s political history. She is the author of Republican Women: Feminism and Conservatism From Suffrage Through the Rise of the New Right.

    She has taught a course called “Historical Perspectives on Child Welfare, Adoption and the Family.”

In the West

  • Dr. Julia M. Bledsoe

    Dr. Julia M. Bledsoe is a clinical professor of pediatrics in the department of pediatrics at the University of Washington. She is also a primary care, general pediatrician who specializes in adoption medicine.

    Contact: 206-598-3006.
  • Elliot Dorff

    Rabbi Elliot Dorff is a professor of philosophy and university rector at American Jewish University in Bel-Air, Calif. He is an expert in Jewish family issues, including adoption. He has studied the Jewish perspective on assisted death, transhumanism and ethics in general.

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