Middle East Crisis Hits Home
"We are standing with our Israeli brothers and sisters, and sometimes literally our brothers and sisters, aunts, uncles, cousins, friends and saying 'We are with you, we hope you stay safe," explained member Mary Hartigan.
Inside, the congregation prayed during a service called, "We Stand with Israel." Outside, others, including some members of the Jewish community, said they don't support the current situation.
"Those of us who are gathered outside are not gathering against Israel," said Stefani Engelstein. "We certainly support Israel and its right to defend itself, but we feel that their policy recently, particularly with the decision to attack Lebanon, is just disastrous."
And, for some students from Lebanon, the crisis hits close to home.
"I came from there six months ago," said Rani Jaafar. "So I'm still, to a certain extent, attached to it. I still miss my country, that's natural. I really feel bad to see that lots of people are being evacuated."
Another student, Roger Nahas, said, "I'm in direct contact with my parents and they're telling me that the destruction is huge, like all the places I used to go.
Nahas and Jaafar planned to go home a couple of weeks ago, but now they won't be able to see their families until the fighting stops.