To our community of Rockland,

We, the faith communities of Knox County, read with sadness on the morning of Wednesday, Dec. 15, that the menorah which was set up by our friends at Adas Yoshuron Synagogue on Main Street was unbolted and knocked down on Tuesday night, Dec. 14.

We condemn, without qualification, this act of disrespect and dishonor enacted against our Jewish friends. For several years, and especially over the past few months, public rhetoric which inflames antisemitism in particular has accelerated. Last year, according to the Anti-Defamation League, antisemitic incidents increased by 34 percent, the largest jump and the largest number of attacks since the ADL began tracking such incidents.

The time of Hanukkah is a celebration of the defeat of tyranny and the celebration of freedom. For eight days, candles are lit to recognize the freedom to worship and believe, not only for those of Jewish faith, but in recognition of that freedom for all. We support, unequivocally, this celebration, and all celebrations, of our Jewish neighbors.

As people of faith, as fellow worshipers, spiritual seekers, meditators and secular supporters, we welcome the diversity and expression of belief in our community. We support our Jewish community and condemn all expressions of antisemitism. To quote Jessica Seinfeld, “I support my Jewish friends and the Jewish people.”

In the name of God, during this shared holiday season, we pray you will do the same.

Peace, grace, and blessings to all!

Aldersgate United Methodist Church, Rockland – Rev. Linda Campbell-Marshall

Broad Cove United Methodist Church, Cushing Maine – Rev. Anne Roundy

Episcopal Church of St. John the Baptist – The Rev. Peter Jenks

First Congregational Church of Camden – Rev. Patty Fox

First Congregational Church of Camden – Rev. Dr. Ute Molitor

First Universalist Church, Rockland Maine – Rev. Marty Pelham

Nativity Lutheran Church – Rev. Wendy J. Anderson

People’s United UMC, John Street UMC, Finnish Congregational Church – Rev. Michelle M. Wiley

Rockland Congregational Church, Rockland Maine – Rev. Dr. Seth Jones

St. Brendan the Navigator Parish – Fr. Nathan D. March

St. Peter’s Episcopal Church – The Rev. Lael Sorensen

St. Thomas Episcopal Church – The Rev Canon Lisa Fry

St. Thomas Episcopal Church – The Rev. Dr. Rosalee Glass

Thomaston Baptist Church – Rev. Wayne Sawyer

True Heart Sangha of the Midcoast – Peggy Smith, Dharma Teacher

True Heart Sangha of the Midcoast – Rob Wall

Community Representation – Greg Marley, LCSW