Members of the congregation at Chabad of Poway embrace after the shooting. Photo by Chris Stone

From President Donald Trump to Gov. Gavin Newsom, and from both Catholic and Muslim leaders, America expressed its grief Saturday over the deadly shooting at a synagogue in Poway.

“California sends our deepest and heartfelt condolences to the friends and families of the victims of today’s shooting at the Chabad of Poway,” said Newsom in a statement.

“While we continue to learn more about what transpired, we can’t ignore the circumstances around this horrific incident. No one should have to fear going to their place of worship, and no one should be targeted for practicing the tenets of their faith.”

President Trump tweeted his “thoughts and prayers to all of those affected by the shooting at the Synagogue in Poway, California” and in a second tweet thanked an off-duty Border Patrol agent for confronting the shooter.

“Sincerest THANK YOU to our great Border Patrol Agent who stopped the shooter at the synagogue in Poway, California. He may have been off duty but his talents for law enforcement weren’t!” tweeted Trump.

Vice President Mike Pence also tweeted his thoughts.

Catholic Bishop Robert W. McElroy called for all the priests in the San Diego diocese to pray at Sunday Mass for the victims of Saturday’s shooting and for the Jewish community.

“Our hearts go out to everyone at Chabad House Poway for the senseless violence that took place earlier today,” he said. “Houses of worship should be places of peace. Know that the entire Catholic Community of San Diego and Imperial Counties is keeping you in our prayers.”

The Council on American-Islamic Relations said it stands in “solidarity with the Jewish community in the San Diego area and nationwide” following the attack

“We condemn this disturbing and despicable attack on our neighbors at a house of worship, offer our heartfelt condolences to the loved ones of those killed or injured, and express our solidarity with the Jewish community during this time of shock and grief,” said Dustin Craun, executive director of the San Diego chapter. “We renew our commitment to work together against this disturbing trend of attacks on houses of worship, which should be sanctuaries for worshippers.”

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Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.