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Sephardim Naming for Living Ashkenazi Relatives


Can a Sephardi couple name their child for living Ashkenazi relatives? We would ask permission but wondering if there is any halachic reason not to?


This is a matter of custom. The Sefardim feel that it is an honor to name a child after a grandparent, and it is considered a great honor, that the persons sees his continuation even while he is still alive. The Ashkenazim however feel that this is something reserved for the deceased, and doing so is usually taken negatively. It is not for a specific halachic consideration, therefore if the relative consents to it, it is permitted.

Best wishes



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  1. This was our situation too. I’m Ashkenazi & my husband is Sephardi, and we wanted to name a son after my Ashkenazi father who was still alive at the birth of that particular son.

    We asked the Chief Sephardi rabbi of Beitar Ilit (Rav Tufik) and his gabbai said (while the rav was listening; the rav couldn’t speak at that moment), like the answer above: that if the Ashkenazi relative agrees to it, it’s a very good thing.

    My father agreed and was actually very happy about the unusual (for Ashkenazim) honor.

    Interestingly, this child physically resembles my father and also inherited all his positive characteristics. Don’t know if there’s a connection, but there you go.

    May you all have a lot of nachat from your children.

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