Wounded Poway Rabbi at White House: I Will Teach Others to Be ‘Mighty and Tall’
Rabbi Yisroel Goldstein — who was wounded in last Saturday’s deadly shooting attack at synagogue near San Diego — spoke on Thursday at a National Day of Prayer event in Washington, DC.
“Just five days ago, Saturday morning, I faced evil and … darkness … right in our own house of worship, right at Chabad of Poway,” Goldstein said in the White House’s Rose Garden with President Donald Trump looking on. “I faced [the killer] and I had to make a decision. Do I run and hide or do I stand tall and fight and protect all those who are there? We cannot control what others do, but we can control how we react.”
“My dear rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, taught me, that the way we react to darkness is with light,” he continued. “It was that moment that I made a decision, no matter what happens to me, I’m going to save as many people as possible. I should have been dead. The Rebbe taught me that as a Jew, you are a soldier of G‑d, you need to stand tall and stand fast do what it takes to change the world.”
“My life has changed forever, but it changed so that I can make change, and that I can teach others to be mighty and tall,” Goldstein declared.
Trump thanked Goldstein, saying, “”Truly your courage and grace and devotion touches every heart and soul in America.”
Also in attendance at Thursday’s event were Oscar Stewart and Jonathan Morales, both of whom confronted and chased off Saturday’s alleged shooter, John Earnest, who was ultimately arrested by police nearby.
Lori Gilbert-Kaye, 60, was murdered in the attack.
Watch an excerpt from Goldstein’s White House remarks below:
After being wounded in the shooting at the Chabad of Poway, Rabbi Yisroel Goldstein wrapped his bloodied hand in a prayer shawl, stood on a chair, and addressed the congregation: “We are a Jewish nation that will stand tall. We will not let anyone take us down.” pic.twitter.com/qVNwgH6NUP
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) May 2, 2019