‘Jerusalem’ Not Kosher Baby Name, Brussels Says
City Hall clerk refused to register name of Israeli couple’s newborn
Bad news for an Israeli couple living in Brussels who wanted to name their newborn Alma Jerusalem: the City of Brussels City Hall refused to register the name, saying they were unable to issue a birth certificate “because Jerusalem does not appear on a list of approved names for children born in the country,” JTA reports.
The couple was told by a city hall clerk, however, that they could get the child’s birth certificate once they procured a letter from the Israeli embassy validating the name, though the father pointedly noted that ‘Bethlehem’ was a Brussels-approved moniker.
The odd news out of Belgium is somewhat reminiscent of the Tennessee couple that went to court earlier this month to decide which last name their eight-month-old son would use—and instead the judge changed the baby’s first name from Messiah to Martin. (“The word Messiah is a title, and it’s a title that has only been earned by one person, and that one person is Jesus Christ,” the judge said.)
What’s in a name? For Jerusalem and Messiah, apparently, quite a lot.
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