Jewish Matchmaker – NOUN: One who arranges or tries to arrange marriages, while “matchmaking” is any process of introducing people for the purposes of dating and mating, usually in the context of marriage.

Well, there you have it – clearly defined in black and white. But is the art of matchmaking really all that simple? And if it is, then why isn’t there a Jewish matchmaker on every corner in every town? Jewish matching is as much a part of our culture and our history, as say, gefilte fish and chicken soup. But professional Jewish matchmaking is a business… a business of the heart. If my own heart was not in it, successfully finding and matching “true life partners” would be nothing more than words in a best-selling romance novel.

I have been a professional matchmaker for many years. Based in Jerusalem, Israel, I often wonder if it’s my close proximity to God, to the Jewish faith, or that this has been and still is… my true calling. For me, it’s more than a “day job” – I work ’round the clock, poised in front of my computer, matching Jewish hearts and souls from all four corners of the globe. And I cannot help but think my inspiration, conviction and dedication comes from the fact that the view from my office window is that of the Old City of Jerusalem.

Matchmaking has always been and still is quite professionalized, but the role of the Jewish matchmaker has become so commercialized, especially with dating services, the Internet, and online dating websites. Once upon a time, we were thought of as essential advisors who helped in finding the “right” spouses, since matchmakers had connections and a relation of good faith with families who were their clients.

And here I am centuries later – in Jerusalem, the spirit of the Jewish world, and this still remains the foundation and the strength of my business. I am often asked, “How do I choose a matchmaker? Is it based on her successful record, recommendations from friends, number of years in the business?” My answer to this is always… “All of the above!” But in fact, it’s so much more. My colleagues and competitors, as many of them are, promote their services through TV and radio interviews, flashy Internet sites, and the promise of finding your “beshert” in less than 30 days, often with a money-back guarantee.

I am uniquely different, and with that, so is my approach to love, partnership, and marriage. Simply put, while others are investing in marketing and public relations, I work – and I work hard. Making a match is no simple task, and finding a life partner is more than acquainting two people based on looks, likes and dislikes, financial status, or even location. I am committed to my clients as if they were my own family or close friends. My first task, and the most important part of the process, is getting to know them, virtually or face-to-face, and often, I have the pleasure of both. I ask one hundred questions (or more), and I never make an introduction without receiving 100 answers.

I will only work with clients who are, themselves, truly committed to finding a life partner. I don’t only offer a service, I offer advice, counseling, and an open door based on experience and a genuine commitment – so much a part of who I am as a person. So, if you’re ready to find “your life partner” and you’re thinking about consulting a real Jewish matchmaker, choose wisely. Be prepared to open your heart. For once you do, a real Jewish matchmaker will do the same for you.