Natalie Portman & Family Go To Temple

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In his very young life, baby Aleph — the only begotten child of Natalie Portman and Benjamin Millepied — has already traveled to Paris, France and Geneva, Switzerland … but today we get to see a photo of the little dude a bit closer to home. Natalie, Benjamin and Aleph were spotted as they made their way out of services at a Jewish temple in Culver City, CA. It would seem that Nat and Ben are keen on getting a jump start on Aleph’s Jewish education.

If anything is worth offering thanks for, it’s the birth of a healthy, beautiful baby. So it’s fitting that Natalie Portman took her 4-month-old son Aleph to synagogue at the Ohr HaTorah Temple on Saturday in Culver City, California. The 30-year-old Oscar winner kept a tight hold on her precious cargo, despite the fact that he was safely strapped into a baby carrier. Protected from the October chill cutting through the Los Angeles sun, Aleph was safely inside her baby romper suit covered in a dog print. The Black Swan star was also joined by her fiance Benjamin Millepied, who followed Natalie out of the temple holding a baby bag.

David’s parents started their children’s Jewish education early on as well (believe me, I’ve seen the family videos) so this makes perfect sense to me. Honestly, I was unaware that Natalie was Jewish before her son was born (tho David tells me that Jewish upbringing tends to come from the mother’s side of the family) … but it seems pretty clear to me that the couple plan to instill as much of the Jewish faith as they can in their young son. With a name like Aleph, he is bound to grow up to be a good Jew :D

[Photo credit: X17; Source]

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  • Corey

    I LOVE Natalie. She was born in Israel and is quite Jewish actually :). She has always been a great advocate for Israel, and I look up to her immensely!

    • @Corey — Huh. I don’t even know why I don’t remember that. I guess that makes sense, David tells me that Jewish upbringing tends to come from the mother’s side (his dad is Catholic).

  • Kate

    I’m pretty sure Natalie was actually born in Israel, attended Jewish schools, knows Hebrew and was raised by Jewish parents. I thought she had also said in an interview a few years back that she wanted to raise her kids Jewish as well. I could be wrong, but my guess is that the desire to start Aleph’s Jewish education early comes from her side as well.

  • erin

    I really hope this does not come out sounding bitchy, because I don’t mean it that way, but if they had taken him to church would you have said they were starting his “Christian education”? I think there have been photos of Reese Witherspoon taking her kids to church, but I don’t think you’ve referred to that as their Christian education. Just wondering why attending temple would be considered getting a Jewish education if the same isn’t true of attending church.

    (I actually believe that both church and temple ARE giving people a religious education, so my qualm is not with that concept. I just don’t see why taking a kid to temple is different from taking a kid to church.)

    • @erin — As I understand it, part of the Jewish faith involves children going to Hebrew School where they learn the Hebrew language, etc. leading up to their Bar/Bat Mitzvahs. When Christians take their kids to church, other than Sunday school, it’s just a worship thing rather than an educational thing (i.e. learning a new language). I suppose the closest Christian equivalent would be Catholics whose children go to Catechism School. But I can’t think of any Catholic celebs off the top of my head. Does that answer your question?

    • erin

      Yes, thank you for explaining the distinction! (I still think church provides a religious education, but I do see the difference as far as formal education for children vs. general education for all.)

  • Marisa

    Mark Wahlberg, Catholic celeb :)

    • sultrywhitecat

      Jim Caviezel is a catholic lol :)