Tuesday, September 11, 2012

September 11, 2001

On this day of remembrance, I thought I would share the benediction I wrote for the an interfaith town wide gathering shortly after 9/11. 

As we prepare for this new year 5773, each in our own way, let us never forget the importance of memory, of witnessing, and of being there for one another in times of need.   May each of you have a new year filled with God's blessings.

Eloheinu v’elohei avoteinu v’imoteinu
Our God, God of our mothers and fathers,
Our names for You are many,
we who have come here are
from different traditions,
but our need for You is the same.

We thank You
for giving us the courage and strength
to come together tonight
in worship and solidarity.

Through our faith in You,
we are beginning to understand
what it means to love our neighbor
as ourselves,
as we mourn together as a nation.

We have marveled
at the heroic efforts of firefighters,
police officers, and otherwise ordinary people,
and for them and to You we are most grateful.

We have seen how important
a phone call home can be,
and we will try to tell those we love
just how much,
from this day forth.

We have learned that what we are
is defined not by what we do,
but by who, and what, and how we love.

When our hearts are tempted
by revenge and hate,
turn us toward the paths
of compassion and love. 

When we are consumed by our anger,
help us to see the humanity
that has been exhibited across our glorious country.

We who have been created in Your image
thank and bless You for keeping us safe.

Help us now, to return feelings of safety
to those in our community
who are feeling so lost and alone.

To love You is to love each other,
to work to make our lives better.
To love You is to love the world
You created, and to work to perfect it.
To love You is to love
dreams of peace and joy that illumine all of us,
and to bring that vision to life.


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