Bishops Make Joint Statement on Bomb Threats at Jewish Schools
February 28, 2017
A statement from Bishop Mariann Edgar Budde of the Episcopal Diocese of Washington and Bishop Shannon S. Johnston of the Episcopal Diocese of Virginia:
We are grieved by the news that two Jewish schools in our area had to be evacuated yesterday due to bomb threats. The Gesher Jewish Day School in Fairfax, Virginia and the Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School in Rockville, Maryland join a list of 72 Jewish community centers in 30 states and Canada that have received a total of 89 bomb threats since the beginning of the year. We worry that these attacks are not isolated incidents, but represent an orchestrated effort to sow fear across our land.
We urge all Christians to join us in prayer and acts of solidarity with our Jewish neighbors. As Christians, we reject all acts of violence against those of other faiths. As Americans, we believe that a threat on any community of faith is a threat against every community of faith. There is no place in our society for anti-Semitism, and we must confront not only those who perpetuate this hatred, but also those who have cultivated a social climate in which bigotry is legitimized.
The fabric of our society is being torn apart, and members of every minority group are increasingly vulnerable as a result. We believe that God calls us to mend the garment of our common life by responding in love to those who are under threat and reclaiming a vision of America where people of all faiths, races, and nationalities are welcome.