Today's Events - An Update From Temple Beth-El

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Dear Temple Beth-El Community,

As many of you have heard, a package was found on Temple grounds this morning. Please know that at the present time, the package that was found near our historic marker today has been removed and secured. Everyone at the synagogue is safe and has returned to the building. We have been cleared to proceed with services as scheduled tonight and tomorrow. While we are all hurt, frightened, and angry that this happened, we will not be intimidated by these actions and we look forward to seeing you both tonight at 5:45 pm and tomorrow at 9:30 am. Family Shabbat will continue as scheduled. Please know that the safety of our congregation and staff are our top priority, and we will provide extra security as deemed appropriate. In addition, we would like to say "Thank you" to the Birmingham Police Department, Jeff Brown of Security Community Network, and the FBI for your efforts today.

See below from Jeff Brown, SCN, as background to today's events.

On Behalf of Jeff Brown, SCN


At approximately 5:00AM CDT, the Birmingham Police Department contacted a representative of Temple Beth-El and informed them of a fire underneath the building. Further investigation yielded that a propane tank, wrapped in clothing, had been ignited. A subsequent perimeter search found a backpack near Temple Beth-El. The Birmingham Police Department Bomb Squad & the FBI were notified and the package has since been secured and removed from the property. The backpack has been cleared. Several electronic items were found but NO explosive device. No injuries have occurred and the investigation is ongoing. Birmingham PD has a person of interest in custody and are conducting interviews. Updates will be provided as further information becomes available.

Click here to follow news coverage of today's events.

With warmest wishes for a peaceful Shabbat,

Rabbi Steven Henkin

Naomi Ivker, President

Glynnis Levitt, COO