A Prayer on September 11


In the Name of God, the Kind, the Beautiful

On this most dark of anniversaries, as someone who has suffered his own personal 9/11, I send out prayers of peace, comfort, and strength on this 10th anniversary of the September 11 attacks. I know the pain that the victims’ families are feeling. I empathize and sympathize with them. I pray that they are brought comfort and God’s Peace and Strength on this day.

I also commemorate this day by posting this signed interfaith statement that came out of Chicago. Even though I am not a signatory, I am in support of it.

United interfaith response to the call for burning a sacred text day and in respect for memory of the victims of 9/11 and in support of vulnerable among us:

AN INVITATION TO PRAY TOGETHER FOR THE EXTINGUISHING OF FIRES AND THE KINDLING OF A FLAME

What could inflame hatred and violence more than to set afire that which others hold sacred?

In the past, burnings of the Talmud were often a prelude or accompaniment to killings of Jews. And today again, hatred and violence can be the only source and purpose of those who promise to burn the Holy Quran on the day we Americans and the whole world remember the tragic events of 9/11.

We — who thank God for the diversity and vitality of religious commitments in our nation and who seek, from the wellsprings of our many faiths, to promote mutual understanding and respect and to advance justice and peace — cannot remain separated and silent on the 9/11 weekend. Our own religious commitments call on us to speak out.

We ask you, therefore, to join us in prayers that will kindle a different flame –

a prayerful spark that will ignite us again to bring comfort to those who lost loved ones on that terror-filled day and in the wars that followed from it;

a prayerful spark that will ignite us again to stand against the forces of distrust, hostility, and cruelty;

a prayerful spark that will ignite us again to stand with the documented and undocumented immigrant, the homeless and those losing their homes, the jobless and the despairing;

a prayerful spark that will ignite us again to seek healing and reconciliation at home and abroad for the cause of justice and peace.

In whatever way is in keeping with your own religious tradition, we ask you to pray with us on the weekend of September 10 -12 that the fires of hatred and violence in our nation and in our world will be extinguished and that, together, we can stand in mutual dignity and respect, see the image of God in every human being.

Signed:

Rabbi Andrea London
Beth Emet Synagogue, Evanston, Ill.
Jewish-Muslim Community Building Initiative, JCUA

Dr. Zaher Sahloul, Chairman
Council of Islamic Organizations of Greater Chicago

Joshua Hoyt, Director
Illinois Coalition of Immigrant and Refugee Rights

Jane Ramsey, Executive Director
Jewish Council on Urban Affairs

Jay Moses
Chicago Presbytery

Dr. Bambade Shakoor-Abdulla
Chicagoland Shura Council

Imam Kifah Mustapha
Mosque Foundation

Rabbi Bruce Elder
Congregation Hakafa
Board Member, Jewish Council on Urban Affairs

Orlando Rede Kopp
Church of the Brethren

Sidney Hollander
Board Member, Jewish Council on Urban Affairs

Bishop Jung
United Methodist Church

Rev. Andrea Christopherson
Northern Illinois Conference

Rabbi Michael Zedek
Emanuel Congregation

Bernie Wong
Chinese American Service League

Rev. Livingston
Rainbow PUSH Coalition

Father John Mukasa
United African Organization

Samuel Fleischacker
Director of Jewish Studies, University of Illinois at Chicago

Fr. Robert Oldershaw
St. Nicholas Church

Rev. Tom Rosa, Interim Rector
St. Mark’s Episcopal Church

Rev. Nancy M. Waite, PhD; BCC
Director and Chaplain, Pastoral Care and Healing Arts Department
NorthShore University HealthSystem

Rev. Robert V. Thompson
Lake Street Church of Evanston (Ill.)

Pastor Daniel Ruen
Grace Lutheran Church

The Rev. Canon Jane P. Henderson
St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church

Rev. Dr. Ann L. Rosewall
Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary

Rev. Richard Mosley, Jr.
Hemenway United Methodist Church

Rabbi Brant Rosen
Jewish Reconstructionist Congregation, Evanston, Ill.

Charlotte Lehman, M.Div., Lead Pastor
Reba Place Church

Richard Rhodes
Board Member, Jewish Council on Urban Affairs

Rev. Wendy Mathewson, Associate University Chaplain
Northwestern University

Rev. Esther Williams-Hays
The Bread of Life International

Mary Katharine Deeley, Director of Christ the Teacher Institute
Sheil Catholic Center at Northwestern University

Rev. Barbara Pescan
Unitarian Church of Evanston (Ill.)

Reverend Jessica Gregory
Northminster Presbyterian Church

Frank C. Senn, Pastor, Immanuel Lutheran Church, Evanston, Ill.

Rev. Dr. William M. Youngblood
Northminster Presbyterian Church

Janet W. Boyd, Pastor
St. John’s United Church of Christ

Susan Murphy
Interfaith Action of Evanston (Ill.)

Rev. Thomas Libera
St. Athanasius Church

Rev. Dean L. Francis, Senior Pastor
First United Methodist Church

Fr. John Kartje
Chaplain & Director
Sheil Catholic Center/Northwestern University

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