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Palm Beach County community unites after Southern California synagogue attack

Star of David, Judaism
Posted at 4:17 AM, Apr 29, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-29 07:00:05-04

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. - Security has been increased at local synagogues after another attack at a house of worship.

Four people were shot Saturday, including a woman who died, at a Chabad synagogue near San Diego.

“We will not give in to that fear or hate,” said Michael Hoffman, the President and CEO of the Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County.

The Jewish community is once again standing in solidarity, and local law enforcement are beefing up security.

“When the tragic events took place in San Diego, our director of community security was on the phone instantaneously with our local law enforcement, and we appreciate that they immediately ramped up police patrols at local synagogues and institutions,” Hoffman said.

Both Hoffman and local rabbis say in order to move through this climate of hate, all religions need to appreciate the diversity that binds everyone together.

“What we require now is a transformation of religion in order to build bridges of understanding rather than to build walls of separation,” said Rabbi Barry Silver.

The targeted attack in San Diego happened on the last day of Passover, and six months to the day when 11 people died after a gunman opened fire at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh.

Now, Hoffman is encouraging everyone to stand strong and not let religious intolerance win.

“We will not close our doors. We will not be scared away. We will continue to gather, and we will continue to have a thriving Jewish community here in the Palm Beaches,” Hoffman said.

The Jewish community will come together Monday at 7:30 p.m. during a vigil at Palm Beach Synagogue to honor the victims from Saturday’s shooting.

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