Rabbi Tuly Weisz, director of Israel365 and editor of The Israel Bible, issued the following statement in response to Saturday’s shooting at The Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh:
“There is a long, bloody history of Jews being murdered in our houses of worship. What is new is that this is happening in America in 2018. It is jarring, horrible and should be a wake-up call that terror needs to be obliterated everywhere.
“People all over the world must stand together against religiously motivated terrorism.
“As an Orthodox rabbi who has dedicated his life to building bridges between Jews and our Christian friends, I call on lovers of Israel everywhere to stand in unity and pray for these families whose loved ones were killed, and to fulfill the words of the Prophet Isaiah, ‘Comfort, oh comfort My people, says your God.’”
About Rabbi Tuly Weisz:
Rabbi Tuly Weisz is the editor of The Israel Bible, the first study Bible edited by Jews for Christians and dedicated to highlighting the land and the people of Israel, a #1 New Release in both Jewish and Christian Bible categories on Amazon.
Through his popular Israel365 websites and emails, which reach hundreds of thousands of readers each day, Rabbi Weisz is dedicated to spreading love for Israel, primarily to non-Jews all over the world.
Eleven people have been reported killed and at least four others were injured in a shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue in the Squirrel Hill section of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania shortly after 10:00 AM on Saturday. Among the injured were three police officers.Police sources told Pittsburgh television station KDKA that 48-year-old Robert Bowers walked into the building and yelled, “All Jews must die” before opening fire. When officers arrived, the gunman reportedly shot at them, forcing officers to use their vehicles as a shield.
Bowers was injured in the following shootout with police. He surrendered after negotiation and was transported to a hospital.
The shooting happened during Shabbat services at the conservative Jewish Synagogue, the building was full of people for a Saturday service and police say they’ve received several calls from people barricaded inside the Synagogue.
Bowers announced his intentions on Twitter before the attack. That account has since been taken down.
Michael Eisenberg, a past president of the synagogue, told media there would have been three simultaneous services going on in the main building, with 30 to 40 people in two larger services and about 15 in a smaller one. One of the services was a bris, a circumcision ceremony involving a male infant.
“We’ve never had any threats,” Eisenberg said, adding that the synagogue had consulted with the Department of Homeland Security and other synagogues about safety precautions, including making doors easier to open from the inside so people could escape in the event of an attack.
President Donald Trump made a statement to the media at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland. He expressed sympathy for the victims. When asked if gun laws needed to be changed to prevent such shootings, the president said, “If they had protection inside the results would have been far better. If they had some kind of a protection inside the temple, maybe it would have been a much different situation.”