Members of vandalized synagogue thank community

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Members of a vandalized synagogue reached out to its extended community to say thank you. (WPVI)

Members of a vandalized synagogue in the Tacony section of Philadelphia reached out to its extended community Friday night to say thank you.

Dozens of community members, gathered at Temple Menorah Keneseth Chai for a special service of appreciation -- a thank you to those who helped after the synagogue's windows were vandalized.

"We have been so overwhelmed and touched by the outreach by the community and outpouring of support, both financial and letters," said Rabbi Robyn Frisch.

In January, the Glaziers Union donated time and materials to replace eight windows smashed just before a Friday evening service. That was the second time in two months that rocks were aimed at the colorful panes,

Since an arrest hasn't been made, the motives are unclear. But Rabbi Robyn Frisch fears it's an example of growing intolerance.

"I feel that there's been something unleashed in our society that was probably bubbling right below the surface, and that people who just don't like people that are different." said Rabbi Frisch.

News of the vandalism spread nationwide. A community paid $3 thousand to replace the windows and $10 thousand in donations rolled in for the now-installed security cameras.

"I think it's wonderful. People really care," said Ann Cohn.

And supporters came to show it. At a time when our nation seems divided, this was a night for unity.

"We wanted to show our support as representatives of the Sikh community," said Ashvinder Kaur of Downingtown.

"I felt like the community's coming together. I want to be a part of that," said Lisa DeBaun of Northeast Philadelphia.

The temple has been a part of the community for 92 years. Longtime members say this is the first major incident of vandalism they can recall, and they're working to make it the last. They are still raising funds to install flood lights.

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