Modesto synagogue shows support for East Coast community after Hanukkah attack

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MODESTO, Calif. (KTXL) -- Religious leaders in Modesto will come together Friday to stand against hate and anti-Semitism.

Members of Congregation Beth Shalom will hold a solidarity Shabbat to show the Jewish community of New York and New Jersey that they stand by them in the aftermath of what investigators say was a hateful attack.

“We say no hate and no fear,” said Congregation Beth Shalom President Doug Highiet.

Federal investigators say Grafton Thomas entered a New York rabbi’s home with a machete, leaving at least half a dozen people at the Hanukkah celebration critically injured.

Thomas has pleaded not guilty.

The attack was just one of many recent anti-Semitic incidents on the East Coast.

“One was too much but after several attacks, we just couldn’t stay silent any longer,” Highiet told FOX40.

Highiet’s synagogue will host Shabbat, which will feature a diverse group of speakers.

“We wish to show that by gathering in solidarity, we can combat hate and prejudice,” he said.

Friday night’s event begins at 7. Saturday’s event at the congregation in Modesto begins at noon.

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