What Would You Do?

By Jane Herman

Posted on 26th April 2010

Each month, Jane Herman, a sophomore at Buckingham Browne & Nichols in Cambridge, MA, surveys Jewish students about an ethical dilemma. This column is brought to you by The Jewish Advocate.

This month's dilemma: You receive an invitation to a classmate's bar mitzvah service. You reply that you will attend. A week later you receive another bar mitzvah invitation from a friend whom you prefer, but it takes place that same morning. What would you do and why?

Let's hear from you.

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  • Posted by noahvirgile on 5/27/2010 8:25:31 PM
    Well, I've definitely experienced this before. It's tough, but I usually do this: I go to the first person's service, then I go to the close friend's party, or vice versa. I'm quite a flexible person, so I'll usually just let them decide what they want me to go to. Either that, or, if the second person is a VERY close friend, I will let the other person down very gently, and would still congratulate them, and probably get them something, so that they know I remembered.
  • Posted by Clovis on 5/27/2010 7:57:57 PM
    I am not Jewish, so I would don't have the experience of having a classmate invite, however I have had friends invite to on the same date. When I am faced with this dilemma, it is best to first find if you value one friend over another. If you do, and it is a prominent difference, then I believe you should chose the person you like more. Going back to the specific problem we are faced with, I believe going to the service of your classmate from your temple will have more of a meaning. Then, you could go to your friend's celebration and have a great time. This way both your religious duties and having fun are completed. That is my view on the dilemma. Keep posting the questions!
  • Posted by Daniel on 5/3/2010 4:09:23 PM
    Generally, I think that if I'm invited to something, and reply yes, I should stick with it. However, if the second invitation was a close friend, I would have a sincere conversation with the first person explaining the situation I'm in and hope they understand.

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