Vandals hit church, synagogue with words of hate

- Racist vandals targeted two houses of worship in Manhattan. Members of the church and synagogue say they refuse to be intimidated by hate.

A swastika, now removed, was spray-painted on a wall of St. Paul and St. Andrew Methodist Church on the Upper West Side two nights ago. The symbol of hate was scrawled underneath a sign that reads "Hate has no home here."

The pastor said that while the swastika may have been small in size, its message of hate and intolerance was loud and clear.

"Everyone has a home in God's house," Rev K. Karpen, the senior pastor, said. "I don't know the motivation. It was so sad to see it underneath the sign because it stands for the exact opposite."

The church also holds many interfaith services, which is why the sign is written in Hebrew and Arabic as well as English.

"For 26 years we've shared our building with Congregation B'Nai Jeshurun, a synagogue," Karpen said. "We also work with several Muslim groups."

Also two nights ago, someone defaced Synagogue Beth Hachasidim on the Lower East Side. The vandal wrote an obscene word and "KKK."

We do not know if the cases are connected.

Some New Yorkers told us they are outraged but also not surprised given recent events around the country.

But like the banner at St. Paul and St. Andrew reads, hate has no home here. Not now, not ever.

"Not here in New York City, not in our day and age when we need to work together," Karpen said. "We need to love each other. We need to think about the things that unite us not the things that divide us."

So far police have not arrested any suspects. If you have any information on either case, please call the NYPD.

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