Antisemitic Vandalism at Temple De Hirsch Sinai

A Message from Dean Thomason

Greetings, people of the Diocese of Olympia,

I was deeply saddened to learn of the most recent antisemitic vandalism several days ago at Temple De Hirsch Sinai. I’m sharing with you all the good words that our Cathedral Dean, the Very Rev. Stephen Thomason, shared about this incident. Please join me in praying for the people of Temple De Hirsch Sinai.



Dear Friends,

Monday night I was in touch with my good friend and colleague Rabbi Daniel Wiener of Temple De Hirsch Sinai to express my sorrow for the vandalism the synagogue suffered once more, and to express our solidarity with his congregation. He quickly responded with gratitude and asked that we display a sign in front of Saint Mark’s (see the image at the bottom of this message). I said, of course we would. I want to be clear: this was a hate crime, and as Deitrich Bonhoeffer famously wrote: “Silence in the face of evil is itself evil.”

The treacherous evil of antisemitism is not new, but it is on the rise in our time, and Seattle is not immune from such hatred. The fact that it happened to our neighbors on the eve of Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Remembrance Day) is, as Rabbi Wiener said, “soul-sickening.” So we stand in solidarity with and support of our Jewish siblings, and we lend our voices of non-violence to the cause of tikkun olam, the long held Jewish virtue of working for the healing of the world… the whole world. Our words and actions matter!

I am in Memphis this week attending a conference with sixteen clergy colleagues. As I write this, we’ve just returned from the National Civil Rights Museum at the Lorraine Hotel where, as you know, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., was assassinated April 4, 1968—fifty-five years ago. The museum offers a sobering and moving historical exposition of significant events in the struggle for human dignity and racial equality in our nation, but it refuses to leave it as a remnant of the past. The museum invites us into the work that still is ours today. We have much work to do.

I am grateful for this community of Saint Mark’s in which we engage such work together, and I am exceedingly grateful for our interfaith community in Seattle which renews once more our commitment to common cause. I bid your prayers for Temple De Hirsch, for all people of faith, and for any who have been deluded by hate into thinking that violence is the way forward.

Peace and prayers,

The Very Reverend Steven L. Thomason
Dean and Rector