About six years ago, an American Christian woman asked local genealogist Michael Goldstein to find out whether her maternal grandfather was Jewish. Her suspicion was based on a vague gut instinct and contradicted her grandfather's own words - even his marriage certificate clearly stated he was Christian. Goldstein, who heads Israel's Genealogical Society, thought he was dealing with another wannabe Jew. Reluctantly, he started to dig.
Within about a week, the Toronto native located a woman who lived in Haifa who seemed to be related to his client. "I approached her hesitatingly," recalled Goldstein, who this week is expected to be elected president of the International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies. After a short conversation it emerged that Goldstein's client was right: the Haifa woman was not only her cousin; her family tree reaches far into the Middle Ages, containing dozens of rabbis.
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