Local Rabbi Reflects on Deadly California Synagogue Shooting - NECN

Local Rabbi Reflects on Deadly California Synagogue Shooting

"Where is the end? How does this stop? Who knows the right words to say."

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Local Rabbi Reflects on Synagogue Shooting

    Rabbi Keith Stern of Newton, Massachusetts, mourns the deadly synagogue shooting in California. (Published Sunday, April 28, 2019)

    This final day of Passover is marked by deadly violence, and one local rabbi spoke with NBC10 about the heartbreak he feels after yet another place of worship becomes an open target.

    For Newton, Massachusetts, Rabbi Keith Stern, any shooting inside a place of worship hits close to home.

    "I was on my way to the synagogue to perform a bar-mitzvah and to get this news is so disheartening and really crushes one's spirit," he said.

    On the final day of Passover, during Shabbat services, gunfire broke out at a synagogue in Poway, California, just twenty miles north of San Diego. One woman was killed and at least three other worshipers were injured, including the synagogue's rabbi.

    A 19-year-old man is in custody as authorities work to figure out his motive.

    Stern says violent events like these force them to think about increasing their security while somehow balancing their mission to keep their doors open and welcome for all.

    "Religious sites that become open targets for people have almost become too much to bare," he said.

    And while they grieve with the families who lost their loved one, Stern said fear has no place at his synagogue.

    "Where is the end? How does this stop? Who knows the right words to say. And I don't think there are right words except to be more vigilant."

    The attack, on a holy Saturday, comes some six months after 11 people were shot and killed in Pittsburgh.

    President Donald Trump offered his respects Saturday.

    "My deepest sympathies to people affected by— obviously looks like a hate crime."

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