The senseless murders of 49 Muslims during Friday prayers at two Mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand horrifies us.
The World Union for Progressive Judaism, representing over 1.8 million Jews around the world, condemns this act of terror and religious intolerance, and sends our support and condolences to the entire New Zealand community.
This evil – like all acts of religious terrorism – is difficult to understand. For Jews, the memories of Pittsburgh in October, and the violence last Friday at the Kotel in Jerusalem, remind us that all acts of religious intolerance weaken our societies and strike fear into the hearts of all religious communities. Those who aid the spread of hate and violence must be condemned and prosecuted without hesitation.
Our hearts go out to those families who have lost loved ones and we send our prayers for a speedy recovery to those who have been injured.
As we approach Purim, we are reminded that all people of faith seek light, joy and happiness in their religious communities. Today’s violence must propel us to work together to silence those voices bent on spreading violence and intolerance.
Rabbi Daniel Freelander, WUPJ President
Carole Sterling, WUPJ Chair
Dr Phillip Bliss, Chair of WUPJ Advocacy