How’s your memory? I sure don’t want her to keep score for me! There aren’t numbers enough to record my lost golf balls!
Joking aside, on Friday, September 11, our memories will kick in as we remember that awful day in 2001 when our nation was terrorized by evil. Some tragedies of the past are so impactful we remember where we were when we first found out. I remember sitting at the kitchen table 57 years ago with dad’s arm around me as he shared the assassination of JFK. I needed the comfort of his embrace! How raw the emotion of 911 only 19 years ago and 45 miles away as we found out the terrible reality of the world’s deadliest terrorist attack! But we have to remember and honor the lives of some 2977 heroes who died, the many injured who still live with their challenges, and our God who brings good despite humankind’s evil!
Our tradition at Holy Faith is to call the community to remembrance on Patriot’s Day. On September 11 each year we ring the bell for two minutes at 8:46 a.m. – the time American Airlines Flight 11 struck the north tower of the WTC. We ring again at 9:03 a.m. – when United Airlines Flight 175 struck the south tower. We ring a third time at 9:37 a.m. – the time AA Flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon. And a final time at 10:03 a.m.- when UA Flight 93 was brought to the ground by valiant heroes, stopping deadly impact at the White House or the Capitol. As we remember, we honor and thank God for these heroes and we receive comfort and strength from Him to know His presence and care in Jesus, no matter what.
With this email, I would like to call all of us to remembrance and prayer this Friday. It is an opportunity for our heavenly Father to wrap His loving arms around us! Find a small bell to ring in your presence as I ring the Holy Faith bell at these times. Share with your Lord a time of prayer! Yes, feel the sadness and pain of loss; yet also receive by faith the grace and peace of Jesus, who always remembers us in our weakness and is with us always. Let Him make real for us the words of Psalm 91:1-2, “He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust!’”