Anti-Semitic message painted on Boston-area church

(JTA) — A suburban Boston church was vandalized with an anti-Semitic message while police were hunting for Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.

The Victory Assembly of God church in Sharon, Mass., was vandalized on the night of April 19, as police pursued Tsarnaev, 19, and the city and area towns were locked down.

Windows were broken in the church and the symbols $= (Star of David) = (swastika) were sprayed on the church’s wall. Billboards for an upcoming Jerusalem Day celebration at the church also were destroyed.

The church’s Rev. Joe Green told local media he believes the anti-Semitic vandalism was the result of the planned Jerusalem Day celebration.

“It’s really disappointing and sad that communities of faith are now the target of people who want to perpetrate messages of hate,” Robert Trestan, New England regional director of the Anti-Defamation League, told the Boston Globe.

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