A Reform Temple in Ra’anana, Israel was vandalized early Thursday morning in an attack believed to be linked to a debate over whether to open the Western Wall to non-Orthodox prayer services, Times of Israel reported today.
The phrase “The divine presence will never leave the Western Wall” was scrawled on one wall of the Reform temple, as were references to passages from Psalms and Ovadia that call on the wrath of a vengeful God.
A knife was also found on the scene, and someone had written, in red, on the blade, an allusion to a scriptural obligation to kill heretics.
The synagogue’s leadership has been active in the movement to open up the Western Wall to different denominations of prayer and recently participated in an unsanctioned mixed-gender prayer service there.
A similar attack on the synagogue occurred in 2014.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu condemned the vandalism, saying that “such acts have no place in our free society.”