TRANSCRIPT: Rebecca Reyes on Whether Her Husband Should Be Jailed for Taking Their Child to Church

REBECCA: Well, it made me kind of sick. Not-- not that he is Catholic, but that he would do something like that, when I'm the custodial parent-- without talking to me. And so, I filed a motion to-- keep him from exposing her to anything outside the Jewish faith until the court could decide at the trial, which was already scheduled, I think it was, like, 30 days away, or something like that. Till the court t-- could decide whether it's harmful for her to be exposed to something other than Judaism right now.

CUOMO: Before you ran to court, why didn't you just pick up the phone and talk to him about it, and say, "What is this about?"

REBECCA: Because I-- I th-- I understood in that moment that I no longer had any semblance of a partner on the other side. There was nothing to work with. I had been trying to work with him for a very long time. I had been trying to talk to him. I had tried to accommodate him. And the fact that he would do that sent me a very strong message that I didn't have a partner on the other side.

CUOMO: And you had no clue that this was in the works?

REBECCA: I didn't even kn-- know that he would even conceive of doing something like that. No.

CUOMO: So, the TRO (PH) is filed.


CUOMO: Thirty days we wait. And all-- that's what it says, it says don't expose the kid to Judaism-- any other religion other than Judaism, until we have the hearing. That's what it says, right?

REBECCA: That's right.

CUOMO: The idea that taking the kid to church would be perceived as a harm, does that sound far fetched?

REYES: It's hard to swallow, right? I can understand that. So let me-- help you understand.

CUOMO: How is going to church harmful? That's the question.

REBECCA: Any individual time you go to church, there's-- th-- it would just be completely disingenuous of me to say that it's harmful, any single time. But going to church, just like going to synagogue, is indoctrination. It's inseparable from just sitting in the pew. Just like going to synagogue, you-- you don't-- you can't separate the sitting there from the element of indoctrination. You can't separate the-- the-- the Tet (PH) and the Torah, having words in Hebrew. You can't separate having images of Jesus and the intonations of-- of-- pl-- things that have to do with Jesus. I'm sorry that I'm not more articulate about what happens, I-- I really haven't spent any time in church. Judaism is an identity. Judaism isn't what I do on Friday nights and-- and Saturday mornings. Judaism is something that is the core of who I am, and the core of what I understood-- we were doing with Ela. Until she has the ability to make those decisions for herself, about who she is and who she isn't, the message and the consistency of that message is invaluable. Taking her consistently to church undermines the message of who she is, and the consistency of the answers about who she is and who we are. When she's old enough to understand, because she's a self aware enough to understand that there are differences, absolutely. Daddy believes something different than Mommy believes. Daddy's entitled to believe something different that Mommy believes, and here's what those beliefs are. But she's three. She has absolutely no capacity to make these decisions for herself. And so, the constant undermining of who she is, who she was born as, and who we agreed she would be in our home, is really harmful.

CUOMO: Do you think that Catholicism is harmful?

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