Boston rabbi urging congregants to carry guns to religious services

BOSTON (WHDH) - In the wake of recent hate crimes, a Boston rabbi is urging members of his congregation to carry guns to religious services.

“I am encouraging my congregants to come armed,” Rabbi Dan Rodkin, of Brighton’s Shaloh House, told 7NEWS.

Rodkin wants his congregants to arm themselves after recent mass shootings at a synagogue near San Diego that killed one person and another last fall in Pittsburgh that claimed 11 lives.

Rodkin says he does not want people to be afraid to attend services.

“We should make sure we are not scared, we continue our lives and be prepared,” he said.

Rodkin has also stepped up security at the synagogue. His wife, Sara, says her husband is only reacting to the times we live in.

“All he’s saying is be aware this is happening,” Sarah Rodkin explained. “If you already have a gun, maybe it’s a wise idea to have it nearby.”

The rabbi’s wife also noted that people need to have faith but also protect themselves.

“It’s very sad we live in such a time but we have to go with the times,” she said. “Whatever happens, we have to react it and realize God protects us but we also have to protect ourselves.”

The Rodkin’s hope the community can overcome fear and avoid giving into what “terrorists want to achieve.”

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