Re: Question on DNA and Cohenim #dna

Stephen Weinstein

There is no way to conclusively prove through DNA that someone is a Cohen.  The child of a non-Jewish woman is never a Cohen, even if he properly converts to Judaism and his father was a Cohen.  However, his Y-chromosome (and that of his son) would still be the same as that of his father, who was a Cohen.  To be a Cohen, you need a line going back to the time of the Exodus in which everyone was born to someone whose mother was Jewish when he was born.  DNA testing will never tell you whether a woman converted before her son was born (which would make him a Cohen if he father was Cohen, and make his son a Cohen, if that son's mother was Jewish) or after her son was born (which would make her son, and therefore his son, not Cohenim).

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