ST. LOUIS PARK, Minn. (FOX 9) - A local synagogue opened its doors to the Twin Cities Jewish community to offer a space to sing, honor and grieve the hundreds murdered in Israel over the weekend.
An estimated 1,700 people came to a solidarity gathering at Beth El Synagogue Tuesday night. Through song and prayer, members of Minnesota's Jewish community expressed the heavy emotions they've carried since they learned of the horrors and carnage in Israel.
"Everyone knows someone who has been killed, who has been taken captive, who is serving. It's unimaginable, and we're left angry and dazed and heartbroken," said Alexander Davis, the senior rabbi at Beth El Synagogue.
Leaders in the Jewish faith braced their community for the long, brutal war ahead. They're standing in solidarity with Israel's decision to defend itself against the terrorist organization Hamas.
"These acts of terrorism are acts of cowardice. They are trying to instill fear. They are trying to make you turn away. They are trying to destroy Israel. We will not let that happen," said U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar.
Minnesota elected officials reiterated the United States’ strong bipartisan support for Israel and vowed to protect Jewish homes and businesses.
"What was erased and what was evident on Saturday morning was the absolute lack of that humanity. The terrorism and barbarism brought on that. That's not a geopolitical discussion; that's murder," said Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz.
Faith leaders recognize many questions are still unanswered, but they're uniting together to support terror victims and address the unprecedented trauma caused by this horrific attack.
"We gather to learn how we can support Israel in its hour of need and how we can support each other in this time of uncertainty. We gather because when Israel is attacked, all Jews, all people hurt," Davis said.