Am I Jewish? (Establishing Jewish Lineage)

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Dear Rabbi Simon,
I am trying to prove my maternal Jewish connection. I have found my great grandmother’s grave in a Jewish cemetery written in Hebrew, would this suffice if I could establish a link between me and her or would I need more proof?
Thank you.

Dear Dominic,
Thank you for your question.
If you can establish your descent on the maternal line from your great-grandmother then you are Jewish if she was Jewish. Her burial in a Jewish cemetery would suggest that she was Jewish, however a definitive confirmation would depend on further research, variables and documentation. For example, not all Jewish cemeteries are (and were) scrupulous about only interring those who are Jewish according to Torah law.
In practice, you would want to present the available evidence to a local Beth Din (Rabbinic court of Jewish Law) who can advise you further, based on a close assessment of the specifics. If you are in the UK I would suggest that you contact the London Beth Din (Court of the Chief Rabbi). You can find them online without difficulty.
Best wishes
Rabbi Rashi Simon

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Ask the Rabbi: Quinoa on Pesach
Dear Rabbi Simon,
Where do you stand on quinoa (and the kitniyot ban) for Pesach?
Many thanks,
Dear Tzippy,
In line with other American authorities, I am in favour of quinoa. Although I reject completely the voices (mostly from Israel) seeking to abolish the ban on kitniyot entirely, IMO we do not need to include in the prohibition pseudo-grains that were unknown in the Old World until modern times. Best to buy with a Pesach hechsher though, to be free of any possible wheat contamination.
Rabbi Rashi Simon
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