Hi, my name is Gil. I have been studying Judaism for a year now, coming from a Scientology background. I want to take the steps towards conversion, the only thing is I have Anemia and my doctor does not recommend circumcision. Is it mandatory even if you have health problems.

Answer:

If the anemia is so severe that it does not permit you to undergo circumcision, then the conversion would not be valid. Circumcision (together with immersion in a mikva) is the main means by which a non-Jew becomes Jewish, and it cannot be foregone.

I hope that the condition is not so severe that it will prevent you from completing the course and the conversion. Good Luck!

Sources: Seridei Eish 101-102; Daas Kohen 150; Har Tzvi 22; all of the poskim mentioned agree that conversion requires circumcision, and cannot be valid without it, under circumstances of danger. They write at length concerning this question, and this is not the place to elucidate the intricacies of the question here.

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