SAN DIEGO — Bishop Robert W. McElroy released a statement Sunday following the murder of 11 people in an anti-Semitic attack on the Tree of Life Congregation Synagogue in Pittsburgh, PA.
“The Catholic Community of San Diego stands in solidarity and love with the Jewish community of our nation,” Bishop McElroy stated.
The Tree of Life synagogue is a Conservative Jewish congregation, according to its website. It’s in Squirrel Hill, a historic Jewish neighborhood. The synagogue has a Shabbat service at 9:45 a.m. Saturdays, the website said.
In 2017, anti-Semitic incidents in the United States surged nearly 60%, according to the Anti-Defamation League. It found 1,986 cases of harassment, vandalism or physical assault against Jews and Jewish institutions last year.
“The shock and horror of the Pittsburgh shooting confront us with the reality that hatred and violence abound in the country that we all cherish,” Bishop McElroy said, ” and the targets of that hatred and violence remind us of the virulence of anti-Semitism, an unforgivable sin against God for which our own Catholic Church bears grave historic responsibility.”
San Diego Police monitored local synagogues after the shooting Saturday. Several police were seen patrolling around synagogues in La Jolla. Increased security was also present at Congregation Beth El during there Shabbat celebration Saturday evening.
“We pledge to keep the Jewish communities of Pittsburgh and of San Diego and Imperial counties in our prayers, and to redouble our efforts to fight the evil of anti-Semitism wherever it emerges.”