Letter: Synagogue stands with Muslim community

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In response to the recent vandalism of the Ahram Halal Market in Portland, Congregation Bet Ha’am, greater Portland’s Reform Jewish community and Maine’s largest synagogue, joins its voice with others to express its outrage over this attack, and our comfort to and solidarity with Maine’s Muslim community.

Judaism demands that we welcome the stranger into our midst and love our neighbor as ourselves. We oppose violence of any kind directed at our Muslim brothers and sisters and stand in support of them, their businesses, their places of worship, and their place in our community. We celebrate the participation of the Muslim community in our broader community. We believe that Judaism calls upon us to respond to this attack with a clear statement that these attacks are completely unacceptable and a violation of the religious and civil rights of our Muslim brothers and sisters. It is our hope that this statement of support and solidarity sends a message, loud and clear, to our Muslim neighbors: We celebrate that you are part of our community and we will speak up and protect your civil rights and your freedoms.

Rabbi Jared H. Saks
Congregation Bet Ha’am
South Portland