Daily Archives: September 11, 2012

US marks 11th anniversary of Sept. 11 attacks with bells, names and a sense of moving on

Americans marked the 11th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks Tuesday in familiar but subdued ceremonies that put grieving families ahead of politicians and suggested it’s time to move on after a decade of remembrance.

As in past years, thousands gathered at the World Trade Center site in New York, the Pentagon and Shanksville, Pa., to read the names of nearly 3,000 victims killed in the worst terror attack in U.S. history.

But many felt that last year’s 10th anniversary was an emotional turning point for public mourning of the attacks. For the first time, elected officials weren’t speaking at the ceremony, which often allowed them a solemn turn in the spotlight, but raised questions about the public and private Sept. 11. Fewer families attended the ceremonies this year, and some cities canceled their remembrances altogether.

“I feel much more relaxed” this year, said Jane Pollicino, who came to ground zero Tuesday morning to mourn her husband, who was killed at the trade center….

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, History, Music, Terrorism

A Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Editorial–11 years after: America remembers 9/11

…the once ubiquitous phrase “war on terror” is not much heard these days and is not much missed. Meanwhile, the fight against terrorists has not stopped. Drones patrol the skies above countries such as Yemen, Afghanistan and Pakistan.

At Ground Zero in New York City, at the Pentagon and at the scarred field at Stonycreek, Somerset County, Americans will gather today to mourn those who should never be forgotten and ponder the significance of that day which became another day in infamy. America has changed, but America has regained its equilibrium — itself a proof the terrorists did not win. They never will win.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, History, Terrorism

A Look Back–Billy Graham's Address at the National Day of Prayer and Remembrance in 2001

President and Mrs. Bush, I want to say a personal word on behalf of many people. Thank you, Mr. President, for calling this day of prayer and remembrance. We needed it at this time.

We come together today to affirm our conviction that God cares for us, whatever our ethnic, religious, or political background may be. The Bible says that He’s the God of all comfort, who comforts us in our troubles. No matter how hard we try, words simply cannot express the horror, the shock, and the revulsion we all feel over what took place in this nation on Tuesday morning. September eleven will go down in our history as a day to remember.

Today we say to those who masterminded this cruel plot, and to those who carried it out, that the spirit of this nation will not be defeated by their twisted and diabolical schemes. Someday, those responsible will be brought to justice, as President Bush and our Congress have so forcefully stated. But today we especially come together in this service to confess our need of God.
Today we say to those who masterminded this cruel plot, and to those who carried it out, that the spirit of this nation will not be defeated by their twisted and diabolical schemes. Someday, those responsible will be brought to justice, as President Bush and our Congress have so forcefully stated. But today we especially come together in this service to confess our need of God.

We’ve always needed God from the very beginning of this nation, but today we need Him especially. We’re facing a new kind of enemy. We’re involved in a new kind of warfare. And we need the help of the Spirit of God. The Bible words are our hope: God is our refuge and strength; an ever present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way, and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea.

But how do we understand something like this? Why does God allow evil like this to take place? Perhaps that is what you are asking now. You may even be angry at God. I want to assure you that God understands these feelings that you may have. We’ve seen so much on our television, on our ”” heard on our radio, stories that bring tears to our eyes and make us all feel a sense of anger. But God can be trusted, even when life seems at its darkest.

But what are some of the lessons we can learn? First, we are reminded of the mystery and reality of evil. I’ve been asked hundreds of times in my life why God allows tragedy and suffering. I have to confess that I really do not know the answer totally, even to my own satisfaction. I have to accept by faith that God is sovereign, and He’s a God of love and mercy and compassion in the midst of suffering. The Bible says that God is not the author of evil. It speaks of evil as a mystery. In 1st Thessalonians 2:7 it talks about the mystery of iniquity. The Old Testament prophet Jeremiah said “The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure.” Who can understand it?” He asked that question, ”˜Who can understand it?’ And that’s one reason we each need God in our lives.

The lesson of this event is not only about the mystery of iniquity and evil, but secondly it’s a lesson about our need for each other. What an example New York and Washington have been to the world these past few days. None of us will ever forget the pictures of our courageous firefighters and police, many of whom have lost friends and colleagues; or the hundreds of people attending or standing patiently in line to donate blood. A tragedy like this could have torn our country apart. But instead it has united us, and we’ve become a family. So those perpetrators who took this on to tear us apart, it has worked the other way ”” it’s back lashed. It’s backfired. We are more united than ever before. I think this was exemplified in a very moving way when the members of our Congress stood shoulder to shoulder the other day and sang “God Bless America.”

Finally, difficult as it may be for us to see right now, this event can give a message of hope ”” hope for the present, and hope for the future. Yes, there is hope. There’s hope for the present, because I believe the stage has already been set for a new spirit in our nation. One of the things we desperately need is a spiritual renewal in this country. We need a spiritual revival in America. And God has told us in His word, time after time, that we are to repent of our sins and return to Him, and He will bless us in a new way. But there’s also hope for the future because of God’s promises. As a Christian, I hope not for just this life, but for heaven and the life to come. And many of those people who died this past week are in heaven right now. And they wouldn’t want to come back. It’s so glorious and so wonderful. And that’s the hope for all of us who put our faith in God. I pray that you will have this hope in your heart.

This event reminds us of the brevity and the uncertainty of life. We never know when we too will be called into eternity. I doubt if even one those people who got on those planes, or walked into the World Trade Center or the Pentagon last Tuesday morning thought it would be the last day of their lives. It didn’t occur to them. And that’s why each of us needs to face our own spiritual need and commit ourselves to God and His will now.

Here in this majestic National Cathedral we see all around us symbols of the cross. For the Christian ”” I’m speaking for the Christian now ”” the cross tells us that God understands our sin and our suffering. For He took upon himself, in the person of Jesus Christ, our sins and our suffering. And from the cross, God declares “I love you. I know the heart aches, and the sorrows, and the pains that you feel, but I love you.” The story does not end with the cross, for Easter points us beyond the tragedy of the cross to the empty tomb. It tells us that there is hope for eternal life, for Christ has conquered evil, and death, and hell. Yes, there’s hope.

I’ve become an old man now. And I’ve preached all over the world. And the older I get, the more I cling to that hope that I started with many years ago, and proclaimed it in many languages to many parts of the world. Several years ago at the National Prayer Breakfast here in Washington, Ambassador Andrew Young, who had just gone through the tragic death of his wife, closed his talk with a quote from the old hymn, “How Firm A Foundation.” We all watched in horror as planes crashed into the steel and glass of the World Trade Center. Those majestic towers, built on solid foundations, were examples of the prosperity and creativity of America. When damaged, those buildings eventually plummeted to the ground, imploding in upon themselves. Yet underneath the debris is a foundation that was not destroyed. Therein lies the truth of that old hymn that Andrew Young quoted: “How firm a foundation.”

Yes, our nation has been attacked. Buildings destroyed. Lives lost. But now we have a choice: Whether to implode and disintegrate emotionally and spiritually as a people, and a nation, or, whether we choose to become stronger through all of the struggle to rebuild on a solid foundation. And I believe that we’re in the process of starting to rebuild on that foundation. That foundation is our trust in God. That’s what this service is all about. And in that faith we have the strength to endure something as difficult and horrendous as what we’ve experienced this week.

This has been a terrible week with many tears. But also it’s been a week of great faith. Churches all across the country have called prayer meetings. And today is a day that they’re celebrating not only in this country, but in many parts of the world. And the words of that familiar hymn that Andrew Young quoted, it says, “Fear not, I am with thee. Oh be not dismayed for I am thy God and will give thee aid. I’ll strengthen thee, help thee, and cause thee to stand upon” my righteous ”” on “thy righteous, omnipotent hand.”

My prayer today is that we will feel the loving arms of God wrapped around us and will know in our hearts that He will never forsake us as we trust in Him. We also know that God is going to give wisdom, and courage, and strength to the President, and those around him. And this is going to be a day that we will remember as a day of victory. May God bless you all.

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, * Religion News & Commentary, Episcopal Church (TEC), Evangelicals, History, Ministry of the Ordained, Other Churches, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Theology, Preaching / Homiletics, Religion & Culture, TEC Parishes, Terrorism, Theodicy, Theology

(Post-Gazette) At Flight 93 memorial site, defense chief reflects on 11th anniversary

Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta appeared somber and reflective as he stood upon “hallowed ground” at the Flight 93 National Memorial on the eve of the 11th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks.

“I came here to Shanksville to extend our nation’s gratitude to the heroes of Flight 93 and their families,” Mr. Panetta said. “At the cost of their own lives they made a fateful decision to fight back and in so doing they prevented an attack on the U.S. Capitol. I am especially grateful to them because on that day I was at the U.S. Capitol.”

The 40 passengers and crew members of Flight 93 are credited with thwarting the deadly intentions of four al-Qaeda terrorists who hijacked their plane less than an hour after it left Newark International Airport.

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Death / Burial / Funerals, History, Parish Ministry, Terrorism

(Boston Globe) A quieter 9/11–Families of victims relieved rememberances will be more subdued

Last Sept. 11, the images of that day were inescapable. Every time they flashed across the screen ”” flames and black smoke rising and an impossibly blue sky ”” the anguish came crashing back.

For the families of those killed, the 10th anniversary retrospectives and memorials were so cruelly pervasive it almost felt as if they were reliving the attacks, they said, rather than simply remembering them from a decade’s distance.

“It seemed like every time you turned on the TV, the towers were falling,” said Cindy McGinty, whose husband, Michael, was killed at the World Trade Center in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. “All the days of build-up, you just couldn’t get away from it.”

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Children, History, Marriage & Family, Terrorism

(AP) For Sept. 11 anniversary, a turning point passed?

Is it time for a different kind of Sept. 11?

Victims’ families and others were poised to gather and grieve Tuesday at ground zero, the Pentagon and near Shanksville, Pa., for the first time after the emotional turning point of last year’s 10th anniversary.

And in New York, there was a sense that it was a season of change and moving forward for the ground zero ceremony. It followed a last-minute breakthrough on a financial dispute that had halted progress on the Sept. 11 museum, and the commemoration itself was to be different: For the first time, elected officials won’t speak at an occasion that has allowed them a solemn turn in the spotlight, but also has been lined with questions about separating the Sept. 11 that is about personal loss from the 9/11 that reverberates through public life.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, History, Terrorism

(BBC) 9/11 cancer victims to have treatment funded

The US federal government has added about 50 types of cancer to the list of illnesses to be covered by a 9/11 health treatment programme.

The decision entitles 70,000 surviving emergency service workers and other survivors to free care.

The National Institute for Occupational Safety announced the change on the eve of the attacks’ 11th anniversary.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Health & Medicine, History, Terrorism

Music for 9/11 in 2012–The Naval Glee Club Sings the Navy Hymn

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, History, Music, Terrorism

The 9/11 Attacks – 102 Minutes That Changed America in 9 Different Videos from 9 New Yorkers

(History Channel) For 102 minutes on September 11, 2001, the world looked on in horror as terrorists flew hijacked passenger planes into New York City’s mighty twin towers, destroying the iconic buildings and killing more than 2,700 people. Watch unfiltered videos from nine New Yorkers who witnessed the day that changed America.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, History, Terrorism

Blog Open Thread: Your Thoughts on the Eleventh Anniversary of 9/11

Remember that the more specific you can be, the more the rest of us will get from your comments–KSH.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Blogging & the Internet, History, Terrorism

Remembering 9/11 Eleven Years Later in Pictures

There are just over 40 of them and each is very fine. Please note that there is an “autoplay” option if you prefer to go that route–KSH.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, History, Terrorism

Remembrance: Chaplain recalls 9/11 attack on Pentagon

Haynes said that, despite all the evil that happened during 9/11, one of the positive things that happened as a result of the attacks was the good it brought out in people.

“It was just an outpouring of love from the American people,” he said. “Everybody was just supportive of one another. I’ve never seen anything quite like that before.”

Haynes said he feels privileged having been at the Pentagon during 9/11, being able to serve those in need of spiritual support. He said that although it was a trying and tiring time, his faith helped him meet the demands.

“I believe that God gives you strength. And I believe in the power of prayer. There was a lot of prayer going on,” he said. “A lot of people just wanted to hear some positive words. I felt like that was my duty. I had to do that. I had to be strong for my fellow comrades and employees in the building. I believe that God prepares us for stuff, and I believe that God had me there for a reason.”

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, Defense, National Security, Military, History, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Religion & Culture, Terrorism

Kendall Harmon: Number 343

On Monday this week, the last of the 343 firefighters who died on September 11th was buried. Because no remains of Michael Ragusa, age 29, of Engine Company 279, were found and identified, his family placed in his coffin a very small vial of his blood, donated years ago to a bone-marrow clinic. At the funeral service Michael’s mother Dee read an excerpt from her son’s diary on the occasion of the death of a colleague. “It is always sad and tragic when a fellow firefighter dies,” Michael Ragusa wrote, “especially when he is young and had everything to live for.” Indeed. And what a sobering reminder of how many died and the awful circumstances in which they perished that it took until this week to bury the last one.

So here is to the clergy, the ministers, rabbis, imams and others, who have done all these burials and sought to help all these grieving families. And here is to the families who lost loved ones and had to cope with burials in which sometimes they didn’t even have remains of the one who died. And here, too, is to the remarkable ministry of the Emerald Society Pipes and Drums, who played every single service for all 343 firefighters who lost their lives. The Society chose not to end any service at which they played with an up-tempo march until the last firefighter was buried.

On Monday, in Bergen Beach, Brooklyn, the Society therefore played “Garry Owen” and “Atholl Highlander,” for the first time since 9/11 as the last firefighter killed on that day was laid in the earth. On the two year anniversary here is to New York, wounded and more sober, but ever hopeful and still marching.

–First published on this blog September 11, 2003

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, History, Terrorism

A Video of the Second Plane Hitting, Taken from Brooklyn

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Sounds and Images and Music: May We Never Forget What Really Happened 11 Years Ago Today

This video is a long download but an important file to take the time to listen to and watch; I make myself do it every year on this day. There are a few pieces I would have wished to do differently in terms of the choices for specific content, but the actual footage and the music is valuable. Be forewarned that the raw images and sounds of the day are emotionally taxing to try to take in, so one has to be in a prepared state before one begins–KSH.

Posted in * Culture-Watch, * Economics, Politics, History, Terrorism