CHRISTCHURCH: Months after the Christchurch mosque massacre, Jewish delegations from around the world visited the two mosques targeted where 51 Muslim worshippers lost their lives.
CHRISTCHURCH: Months after the Christchurch mosque massacre, Jewish delegations from around the world visited the two mosques targeted, where 51 Muslim worshippers lost their lives on March 15.
Jewish communities from New Zealand, the United States and Australia were warmly welcomed by the Muslim community.
After their tour of each religion’s respective places of worship including the Al Noor and Linwood mosques and the city synagogue on Wednesday afternoon, the representatives from both religions gathered at a ceremony at Christchurch City Council where Jewish leaders handed over the cheque of more than $1.1 million to the Christchurch Foundation, to establish the Abrahamic fund.
The money, majority of about $966,000 – was raised by the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburg in the US, Australia (alone contributed $70,000) with the rest of the donation coming from New Zealand will go towards things like education, medical needs, counselling, financial advice for those affected after a white supremacist attacked the two separate mosques.
We feel your pain
The CEO of the New South Wales Jewish Board of Deputies speaking at the Al Noor mosque said he wanted to support Christchurch’s Muslims “spiritually” and “emotionally”.
“Sadly, the Jewish community has experienced its own share of attacks of anti-Semitism, of attacks against it, so we understood the pain that the Muslim community of Christchurch would be going through,” he said.
“[We want] to give a message to the Muslim community that we feel your pain, that understand what you’re going through, and we are here to support you.”
Elimination of fear and discrimination
New Zealand Jewish Council president Stephen Goodman said that the legacy of the Christchurch mosque massacre should be the elimination of fear and discrimination.
“Our common determination is not to be isolated and divided by the terrorist action, but to work together,” he said.
The act of generosity was inspired after Muslim community in its city was supportive and rallied around the Jewish community for the victims of a weekend synagogue massacre at the Tree of Life synagogue in Squirrel Hill, killing 11 people in October last year.