‘It’s Astonishing’ — Worshippers React to Synagogue Shooting

STROUDSBURG, Pa. -- After yet another mass shooting involving a hate crime directed towards a certain religious faith, worshippers are forced to once again gather their thoughts and ask themselves what steps are needed to avoid this.

"It's a sad time in America. That's what I'd say," said Edward Owusu-Ansah of Hamilton Township.

"I can't understand why people do it," said Ronald McCready of East Stroudsburg.

"I think we've lost respect for life. We've lost our bearings," said Rev. Carmen Perry, Church of St. Luke.

Those reactions came from parishioners outside of the Church of St. Luke in Stroudsburg.

Disbelief and sadness followed Saturday's mass shooting at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh.

"I'm from Africa. I've seen this craziness before, but in America of all places? It's astonishing," Owusu-Ansah said.

After this latest hate crime, President Donald Trump had this to say: "If they had protection inside, the results would have been far better. This is a dispute that will always exist I suspect. But if they had some kind of a protection inside the temple, maybe it could have been a very much different situation."

People Newswatch 16 spoke with in Monroe County aren't so sure about that idea.

"When somebody walks in with a rapid fire gun, and they start shooting, who even has time to take out a gun?" Perry said. "You might be able to do something. You might be able to get the guy who's doing it or stopping, but I don't know. There's still going to be a lot of innocent people who are shedding blood."

According to reports, the gunman entered the synagogue through unlocked doors. Most, if not all, churches are open and unlocked on days of worship.

"I can't see locking the church up. Then you're just letting them win. I say leave the churches open. Let the people go in when they want to. Just be alert and watch your back," said McCready.

Even after this latest attack on a house of worship, The Church of St. Luke has no plans to implement any security for its times of worship.

1 Comment

  • jimbrony

    Here you go, report it again: Reverend Perry, you’re doing your congregation a disservice but not having any formal or official security plans in place. You might be surprised to know how many in your sanctuary are carrying. There is too much evil in the world these days. I have faith and trust in God, and I still wear my seat belt, insure our possessions, and carry to protect my loved ones and myself.

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