Published : Thursday, November 1, 2018 | 5:11 AM
U.S. Representative Judy Chu will host a public interfaith event this evening called “United Against Hate” to demonstrate solidarity with the Jewish community and support for inclusion and pluralism in response to the shooting at Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Eleven congregants were killed last Saturday when a man intent upon killing Jewish people burst into the Synagogue and opened fire with automatic weapons during a baby naming ceremony. Six others were wounded, including four police officers.
Tonight’s 6:30 p.m. event at Memorial Park’s Levitt Pavilion at 85 East Holly Street in Old Pasadena will feature Chu along with a number of community leaders and interfaith organizations “working to build solutions and create policies that will prevent future tragedies,” an announcement from Chu’s office said.
“I was heartbroken by the news of the attack at Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh. My heart goes out to every Jewish community across the country that is once again being forced to confront the evil of anti-Semitism,: Chu said. “It is not fair that another generation has to know the fear of being attacked for your religion.”
Confirmed guests and speakers at the event include State Senator Anthony Portantino; Tarek Shawky, Muslim Community Lay Leader; Pastor Tyrone Skinner, Metropolitan Baptist Church; Juliana Serrano, All Saints Church; Kirtan Singh Khalsa, Sikh Dharma of Southern California; Cambria Tortorelli, Parish Life Director, Holy Family Church; Venerable Youheng, Director of Social Education, Fo Guang Shan Hsi Lai Temple; Jason Moss, Executive Director Jewish Federation of San Gabriel and Pomona Valleys; Rabbi Joshua Grater, Executive Director of Friends in Deed; and Cantor Ruth Harris, Pasadena Jewish Temple and Center.
Earlier Cantor Harris hosted a similar event over the weekend at the Pasadena Jewish Temple & Center.
Said Harris Sunday, “We were all there because we recognized the humanity in each other, and that it is worth focusing on that rather than finding our differences. There was a sense of unity and solemnity.”
Chu said in a statement that she organized the event to “to stand in solidarity with the Jewish community and make it clear that anti-Semitism, or any form of bigotry, has no place in our world. That means fighting back against the divisive and xenophobic rhetoric that describes immigrants and refugees as invaders and enemies.”
“Southern California knows our diversity is our strength. It is my hope that this solidarity event will show the country that we are stronger united, not divided,” Chu added.
According to the Anti-Defamation League, which monitors anti-Semitism in the United States, Saturday’s shooting was probably “the deadliest attack on the Jewish community in the history of the United States”
Media reports described the Pittsburgh gunman , identified as Robert Bowers, as having published hatred-filled anti-Semitic social media posts which called Jewish people “the children of Satan.”
Late last month the Pasadena Jewish Temple & Center also announced it would hold a presentation on November 4 focusing on genocide prevention.
Dr. Ellen Kennedy, Executive Director of World without Genocide, will address the issue of how to make a world without genocidal attacks a reality, for Jews and for all people.