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!!!!!!!! Search error!  If the URL ends something like .htm/  or .htm# delete the character(s) after .htm and hit return.

REACTION TO THE 2001-SEP-11 TERRORIST ATTACKS:

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This discussion started on a previous page.

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A sampling of Christian groups' news releases, individual comments, etc:

bulletSEP-11 @11:52: Statements from the ACNSlist distributed by the Anglican Communion Office, London: Archbishop Njongonkulu Ndungane of Southern Africa: "As the world watches the horror of the World Trade Towers tragedy and America's pain, our hearts go out to all people of that nation wherever they may be and I urge all South Africans, regardless of faith, to join forces in prayer. We need to pray for the families of all those dead and injured. We need to pray for all involved in emergency services in New York and other affected areas. We need to pray that the American leadership is granted wisdom to deal with this horrific situation. We need to pray for our world."
bulletSEP-11 @14:07: ACNSlist: Dr George Carey, Archbishop of Canterbury, president of the worldwide Anglican Communion: "I was appalled to learn of the terrible tragedies across the United States. The scale of the carnage and suffering is truly devastating. My thoughts, prayers and sympathies are with all those caught up in these horrific events."
bulletSEP-11 @14:36: From the ACNSlist: The Rev. Canon John L Peterson, Secretary General of the Anglican Communion:  "The death and destruction that we are seeing from New York following such violence and terrorism has devastated us here in London beyond belief. Our prayers are with those suffering at this very moment, for the dead and the their families and friends and indeed for those in fear wondering what the next moment may bring to them. Our prayers, affection and deepest concerns are with all the people of United States. We from afar can pray and I ask all people of goodwill to join us in prayer for America and its people."
bulletSEP-11 @17:22: Jerry Falwell - prominent Fundamentalist Christian pastor and televangelist: "...it is time to get serious about defending our nation and our citizens.  It is time for immediate responsible leadership in our Congress in defining ways to protect and secure our nation...Please join the Liberty University family in praying for the families of those who lost their lives today.  This is the ultimate of tragedies as thousands of families learn that they have lost a loved one, a friend or a coworker...Also please pray for those untold numbers of people who have been injured and those who may remain trapped in the rubble of the collapsed buildings.  Pray also for the medical teams who face hours and hours of treating those who have been wounded.  Finally, also pray that through this terrible national tragedy, our nation will turn its collective heart to the Living God of the Bible."
bulletSEP-11 @18:02: Presbyterian Church (USA): Rev. Jack Rogers, Moderator; Rev. Clifton Kirkpatrick, Stated Clerk of the General Assembly; Elder John Detterick, Executive Director, General Assembly Council: "...We pray for our national leaders who have faced horrendous decisions as the events of this morning unfolded. As they seek to find effective and appropriate responses to this terror, it is our prayer that these responses may be of the kind that will contribute to a future of peace and not serve in any way to escalate the cycle of violence and counter-violence to a higher level. Further, we call our leaders and all people of good will to resist the stereotyping of enemies that so often occurs in these types of situations...."
bulletSEP-11 @18:20: Traditional Values Coalition: "Please pray for President Bush-as Commander-in-Chief of our military that he will have wisdom and discernment as he must deal with this terrorist attack upon America."
bulletSEP-11 @21:23: Crosswalk.com: "Please join us in prayer.  Pray that all other attacks would be foreseen and avoided.  Pray for the leaders who are analyzing the situation and crafting a response. Offer a prayer for those who are injured, for those attempting rescue, and for those waiting to hear of the well-being of their loved ones. We ask you to pray also for the terrorist groups responsible for the attacks.  Pray that love and truth will gain a foothold, that God will draw them to himself, forever changing their hearts."
bulletSEP-12 @ 2:28: Consuming Fire Prophetic Network: "...A great urgency for soul winning will sweep the nation. The pressing question of salvation will increase. 'Is my neighbor saved?' Will be foremost on our minds. A revelation of life and death will enlighten the eyes of our understanding. We will become vigilant soul winners not accepting no for an answer. We will now understand the command, 'Compel them to come in.' A great harvest of life will result from these deaths. An army of soul winners will emerge from the ashes to possess the land. 'And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name...' (Acts 5:41)."
bulletSEP-12 @ 7:07: From the ACNSlist distributed by the Anglican Communion Office, London: Statement by Archbishop Michael Peers, primate of the Anglican Church of Canada: "I want to assure you that my prayers, and those of Anglicans across Canada, are joined with those of God's people in the United States and around the world. While it is too early to understand with any certainty what lies behind these events, we can be certain that God meets us in prayer, and shares in both our horror and our hope.

"Please communicate to the people of the Episcopal Church, and those of your nation, that we are beside you in prayer, in compassion, and in the witness to hope and peace that are our vocation in the face of the wreckage that is in front of all our eyes and that haunts all our hearts
."
bulletSEP-12 @ 7:36: From the ACNSlist: Rt. Rev. J. Jon Bruno, Bishop of Los Angeles: "Let us unite in prayer at this distressing time. Even through these horrible events, obviously the worst assault on this nation since Pearl Harbor, God is our strength and our refuge. I ask all in the diocese to pray and to work in every way possible in the interest of peace and calm amid this crisis."
bulletSEP-12: @ 8:07: The National Council of Churches of Christ in the U.S.A.: "We join all in our nation and world in shock and anger at today's horrific chain of attacks on sites that are national symbols, claiming yet-uncounted innocent lives. In particular, we hold the families of the victims in our prayers. We acknowledge the grief, sense of vulnerability, loss and fear that result from these attacks."

"We condemn these vicious attacks in the strongest possible terms. Even as our national sites are under attack, we call on all people to manifest the best of our national spirit. At such a time as this, we must hold together. We call on people of faith to reach out to one another."

"We especially urge churches, synagogues, mosques and other houses of worship to join in prayer and practical help. We must stand united against the temptation to retaliate against innocent persons."

"We can all pray. We can respond to calls for donations of blood and other practical assistance."

"In this the worst attack on U.S. territory since Pearl Harbor, we must turn our eyes to the God of us all. In Psalm 23, we are promised God's care even 'in the presence of our enemies.' May God guide us in these days of pain."
bulletSEP-12 @ 16:56: Donald Sapaugh,. Chairman and President/CEO iExalt, Inc. "In light of the cowardly attack on innocent citizens of the United States, the taking of thousands of lives, we are reminded by the Prophet Jeremiah that 'the heart of man is desperately wicked' (Jer.17:9). While this is not a surprise in the scope of international affairs, it remains a shock to actually experience these actions by others intended for evil. I want to encourage God's children to pray for those families who have lost loved ones; for those in leadership for courage, wisdom, and decisive action; for those men and women who protect our nation; and for those who are God-fearing to show character and direction. May God protect us as a nation, may His power be manifested through our actions and may we reflect His son Jesus Christ through all we do. We praise God for His love and mercy, acknowledging that He is sovreign, [sic] and ask that He be glorified through this tragedy."
bulletSEP-13:Jerry Falwell, Fundamentalist Christian Teleminister: Pat Robertson interviewed Jerry Falwell on the "700 Club," a Fundamentalist Christian TV program. Jerry Falwell said that the American Civil Liberties Union has "to take a lot of blame for" the terrorist attack. He also listed Pagans, abortionists, the People for the American Way, feminists, gays and lesbians. More details
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2001-SEP-17: James Dobson also attacks Paganism: On his Focus on the Family daily radio program, Dr. James Dobson said: "I also pray that the Lord will bring a national revival that will sweep through our nation and pull us back from the wickedness and the Paganism that's engulfed us in recent years." It is not clear whether Dobson is attacking the 750,000 Neopagans in the U.S. or is using the term "Paganism" in some other way.  4 More details

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A sampling of Inter-faith statements:

bulletSEP-12 @8:07: A note attributed to an inter-faith group in the Netherlands: "Please help us to make a circle of light. Burn please white candles for the situation in the United States. Send in thought love, light and wisdom and do so in brotherhood.. Please, let us set aside all diferences [sic] and become one, at least for the coming time so we may have a positive impact. May God bless all of us, by whatever name you know Him, Her or Them..."
bulletSEP-12: Joint statement by UK religious leaders: By ACNSlist: "We and all people of good faith and goodwill - whatever their religious, ethnic or racial background - are appalled by these terrible attacks on American cities. Such evil deeds have no place in the world we seek to build and share."

"Our hearts go out to the people of America and all those who grieve and mourn. We pray for them and with them. We remember the dead, the bereaved, the injured, and the missing, and all those working to save life."

"As Christian, Jewish and Muslim religious leaders, we believe that it is vital amid so much anguish and suffering to nourish all that we hold in common and to resist all that would drive us apart."

"We share a belief in God's compassionate love and a commitment to cherish
and respect our common humanity."

"We pray that at this time of tragedy, we may be worthy of that gift and that challenge.
"

Issued by: The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr George Carey; Cardinal Cormac Murphy O'Connor, Archbishop of Westminster; The Chief Rabbi, Dr Jonathan Sacks; Dr Zaki Badawi, Principal of the Muslim College, and Chairman of the Imams; and Mosque Council of the United Kingdom.

It was endorsed by: Revd Anthony Burnham, the Free Churches Moderator;   Revd Joel Edwards, General Director of the Evangelical Alliance; Revd Christina Le Moignan, President of the Methodist Conference.

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A sampling of messages from followers of other religions:

bulletSEP-11 @ 15:59: Pagan: Lady Sile, Seattle: "Please post this to pagan lists. There are many things we can do magickally about this, and it will work best if we have some degree of cohesiveness."

"1. Invoke Athena to be with our leaders. Athena is the goddess of wisdom and of defensive war. We need wise leaders to lead us through this and to catch those responsible and bring them to justice."

"2. Invoke the local deities of the land and the Ancestors to take energy released from the deaths of those killed in the attack and transmute it into healing energy for those who survived and for the land itself."

"3. Invoke your circle guardians to stand guard at the borders of the US and protect from additional threats. Dion Fortune and her people did it during the Battle of Britain, we can do it now."
[Editor's note: I suppose that we can consider this a Pagan list, because about 24% of our visitors are from that religion.]
bulletSEP-12 @ 21:28: New Age: Andrea Mikana-Pinkham, Director, New Age Journeys: "...We hope you will join us in praying for the Spirits of those who lost their lives yesterday in such an untimely manner, as well as for their families. Also for our President and other world leaders, that they make decisions in the next few days with prudence and good judgement, [sic] ones that will be for the best and highest good of all people in the United States and all nations on Earth. Most of all -- in each moment in your life -- CHOOSE PEACE."
bulletSEP-13 @ 10:03: Pagan: The Pagan Community Council of Ohio/ Earth Religions Alliance" These groups asked "that we take a moment at 7:00 pm EDT to send healing energy, light a candle, do a ritual, say a prayer or simply have a moment of silence for those harmed in Tuesday's terrorist's attack. We need to keep everyone in mind for a long time to come. Those who are hurting will need support for months or even years. May the blessings of the Lady and Lord be with us all."
bulletSEP-12?: Unitarian: A meditation by Rev. Paul Beckel, of the First Universalist Unitarian Church, Wausau WI:

"We bring many feelings with us to this unexpected gathering today. No two of us will respond alike to the terror, to the loss, to the unknown.

We bring Fear, and deep sadness. Despair, and hope, anger and goodwill,

We bring concern for future repercussions: political and military and financial,

We bring gratitude for our lives and for the lives of our families,

We bring gratitude for the security we have so often taken for granted,

We bring the love which overcomes, We bring judgement, and we bring the courage to withhold judgement.

May we accept the feelings in ourselves and one another as feelings. In the coming days may we be fully aware of the many feelings that come and go, and may we vow not to turn to rash actions out of our rage, our pain, our frustration, or fear.

I invite you to join hands now for one minute that we may share together in Silence.

As we go, some of us will be filled with restless energy, others will be numbed or depressed. But whether we feel the power of righteous anger, or the powerlessness of confusion, may we vow to use what powers we have:

To heal and not to harm, to help and not to hinder

To bless and not to curse

May we use our powers in the service of peace."

bulletThe webmaster of the Fluid Druid Network writes, in part, "Pray and Invoke for Freedom, and the wisdom to not persecute all Moslems, or Arabic Americans. Pray that we don't make the same mistakes we did in WW2 with the Japanese Americans."

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Messages from other organizations:

bulletSEP-13: U.S. Senate: The Senate passed a resolution that was sponsored by Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA). It condemning anti-Muslim discrimination: It urged that:

"...in the quest to identify, bring to justice, and punish the perpetrators and sponsors of the terrorist attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001, that the civil rights and civil liberties of all Americans, including Arab-Americans and American Muslims, should be protected; and condemns any acts of violence or discrimination against any Americans, including Arab-Americans and American Muslims."

The resolution formed an amendment to the Commerce, Justice and State Appropriations bill. It passed 98-0.

bulletSEP-12 @ 19:28: Human Rights Watch: "We profoundly condemn yesterday's cruel attacks in the United States and express our condolences to the victims and their loved ones.  This was an assault not merely on one nation or one people, but on principles of respect for civilian life cherished by all people.  We urge all governments to unite to investigate this crime, to prevent its recurrence, and to bring to justice those who are responsible. Last night, President Bush said that the United States 'will make no distinction between the terrorists who committed these acts and those who harbored them.'  Yet distinctions must be made: between the guilty and the innocent; between the perpetrators and the civilians who may surround them; between those who commit atrocities and those who may simply share their religious beliefs, ethnicity or national origin. People committed to justice and law and human rights must never descend to the level of the perpetrators of such acts.  That is the most important distinction of all. There are people and governments in the world who believe that in the struggle against terrorism, ends always justify means.  But that is also the logic of terrorism.  Whatever the response to this outrage, it must not validate that logic.  Rather, it must uphold the principles that came under attack yesterday, respecting innocent life and international law.  That is the way to deny the perpetrators of this crime their ultimate victory."

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Related essays on this web site:

bulletAttacks on Muslims and their facilities after terrorist acts

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Other web sites to visit:

bulletPartial list of those killed or missing in the attack
bulletPicture Galleries:
bulletA collection of pictures of individuals all over the world expressing solidarity with the U.S.
bulletA second collection of photographs from dozens of countries
bulletCommunicating to children about the tragedy:
bullet"What do we tell our children?" Thoughts by Rev. Meg Riley
bullet"Helping children in response to today's news," Washington State PTA
bullet"Helping kids cope with tragedy," Mercy Corps
bulletSlide/musical tributes:
bulletBy "Ali" at: http://www.sleepytimedreams.com/america.html
bullet"Can'tCryEnough" at: http://new.img.heartlight.org/pftn/presentations/cantcryhardenough.swf
bulletWorld Unity: viewing the tragedy from a world perspective; links to news sources, etc.

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References used:

  1. Jane Gargas & Andriana Janovich, "Local Muslims react," Yakima-Herald, Yakima WA, at: http://www.yakima-herald.com/
  2. Eric Siegel & Laura Vozzella, "MD Muslims condemn attacks, collect funds at prayer services," SunSpot.Net at: http://www.sunspot.net/news/printedition/
  3. "Jerry Falwell Apologizes," at: http://www.falwell.com/ (The original apology has been removed and replaced by a new one dated 2001-SEP-18.)
  4. "Recent Broadcasts," Focus on the Family radio program, at: http://www.family.org/fmedia/bcpast.html  For a few days, you can listen to a recording of this program. However, a audio tape of the program can be ordered from the Focus on the Family web site at http://www.family.org  Look for the broadcast dated 2001-SEP-17.
  5. The Institute for the Secularisation of Islamic Society has a web site at: http://www.secularislam.org/
  6. Peter Ford, "Why do they hate us?" Christian Science Monitor at: http://www.csmonitor.com/2001/

Copyright © 2000 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Originally written: 2001-SEP-12
Latest update: 2001-NOV-13
Editor: B.A. Robinson

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