September 11, 2001 was a beautiful day in the New York metropolitan area, with a sky like the one in this picture. I was on my way to a ministers' meeting, enjoying driving with the top down, when the first news came over Morning Edition. By the time I reached the meeting, the second plane had hit. Each of us stumbled into the meeting with shock and fear; we sat around a radio straining for more information as the church had no tv. We cried, we prayed, we sang, and within 30 minutes, one of the ministers said, "We all have to go back now to our home congregations and get to work."
And we did. Two men from our church, brothers, were killed. Others escaped. Everyone had a story of someone they knew.
They still do.
I imagine that your heart feels heavy this morning. Mine does. Filled with grief, sadness, remorse, anger. I yearn to believe "never again."
But, I don't believe that. It seems inevitable that it will happen again. Violence, terrorism, suicide bombings, war are happening all the time. Why do we think it will be different on our soil? Why don't we cry out each and every day when we read of yet another suicide bombing?
The words of Finlandia are signing in my mind as I write this:
"This is my home,
Oh hear my song, thou God of all the nations
Tell the people in your life you love them. Do a mitzvah. Forgive someone who has hurt you. Tell Congress you want this war to end, regardless of yesterday's report. Hug your children. Address an injustice.