Dozens of people were invited to a Seder meal at an interfaith gathering at the Stroum Jewish Community Center on Mercer Island Thursday.

The Passover Seder marks the beginning of the Jewish holiday of Passover.

Lila Cohen, regional director of American Jewish Committee Seattle, said the evening was an opportunity to make community connections at a time when it is needed.

"There is so much misinformation out there, and there is so much confusion and tension. I think sometimes people just need to come together," said Cohen.

In recent months there have been reported crimes in King County that have raised serious concerns. In February, the Stroum Jewish Community Center was evacuated after a threat. In March, graffiti denying the Holocaust was left on a Synagogue in Seattle. And a sign outside of Muslim Association of Puget Sound in Redmond was vandalized twice in a matter of weeks.

"I think people are just feeling emboldened to express hate," said Cohen. "I don't think this is anything new. I just think people are starting to open their eyes and pay attention to it."

Cohen hopes Thursday night's interfaith gathering will build stronger community connections at a time when people need the extra support.

This month, U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., expressed her concern in a letter to President Donald Trump, urging him to create a task force to prevent and combat the hate violence.