Locals show support for Jewish community through vigil

A Stand Against Hate vigil took place on the Vigo County courthouse steps.

Posted: Oct 29, 2018 10:44 PM

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - People in the Wabash Valley gathered Monday night to mourn eleven people gunned down in a Pittsburgh synagogue.

A Stand Against Hate vigil took place on the Vigo County courthouse steps.

Several people showed up for the candlelight vigil and they were all asked to ponder a simple, but powerful question: Why does it take a tragedy to bring us together?

The candlelight vigil was organized by a group called Wabash Valley in Solidarity. Organizers say they wanted the service to be a visible sign of support to their Jewish friends and neighbors.

Many at the ceremony said they are still processing the devastating news eleven people were murdered simply because of their faith.

Brent Silver attends a local Jewish congregation and said, "That could have been my synagogue. That could have been my church. That could have been my home or my school."

Organizer Lori Henson said, "People with really hateful extreme views feel like they're emboldened to take action based on hateful ideas and hateful emotions and I've been troubled by that and I'd like to bring our country back to a place where we feel like there are boundaries for how we should treat each other."

Organizers hoped this vigil would be an opportunity for healing. Still many are grappling with the violent reality that there are people out there who want to do them harm.

Silver said, "One of the other congregations I attend is more secure and sometimes there are locked doors and sometimes there's a police presence. Unfortunately, that's the world that we live in right now and until we change hearts and minds, that's the reality that we have to deal with."

Organizers said they want the Wabash Valley community to be known as one that is kind and welcoming. They say it's up everyone to make that happen.

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