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Macon's Jewish community mourns the loss of Pittsburgh synagogue shooting victims

After 11 people were shot and killed in a Pittsburgh synagogue, Macon rabbis say it's a loss for the entire Jewish community.

The suspect in the deadly Pittsburgh synagogue appeared in court.

Robert Bowers is accused of killing 11 people and hurting six others.

After the massacre, Macon rabbis are taking extra security precautions in their synagogues to let people know it's a safe place to worship.

Rabbi Larry Schlesinger said it's a loss for the entire Jewish community.

"An attack upon one of our congregations is really an attack on us all," Schlesinger said.

He empathizes with the victims and says it could've happened anywhere.

"It could've been my congregation, it could've been my members who were gunned down, so as a Jewish community, we are mourning the incident," Schlesinger said.

He said they're taking the safety of their congregation very seriously.

"Security precautions will be taken moving forward to try to ensure that something like this doesn't happen at Temple Beth Israel or Congregation Sha'arey here in Macon," Schlesinger said.

Rabbis from both synagogues, Aaron Sataloff and Aaron Rubenstein said as soon as they heard about the shootings, they planned a unity service for those who are mourning.

"We spoke Saturday evening after Shabbat, and we were both our very first call to one another upon hearing what happened. I think the idea was that we come together, and we form solidarity and as a Jewish community," Sataloff said.

Congregation member Samantha Friedman fully plans to attend, and she says her faith is not shaken after what happened in Pittsburgh.

"It's one of those questions if I think too much about it, I might start to cry, but I'm not going to let one crazy person stop me from having my own faith and my own love of this religion," Friedman said.

The unity service will take place at Temple Beth Israel on Friday at 6:30 p.m. and is open to anyone who'd like to attend.

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