I began my calling as a pastor only a few months before the September 11th attacks in 2001. The images of that day still fill me with horror and sadness. I’ve never been to Ground Zero, despite several trips to New York City – though one day I’ll make the journey.
During our trip to the Statue of Liberty on Tuesday I came across the first permanent monument to the 9/11 attacks I’ve ever seen in person. There wreckage from the Twin Towers sits before two walls which are meant to be viewed from the side angle. From that vantage point the twin constructions appear almost exactly at the position the towers once stood in lower Manhattan. On the interior of the left wall are etched the names of all those who perished in the attacks, their names stand as witness to the destruction humans are able to unleash when hatred becomes our prime motivator.
Standing in-between the two walls, faced by the joined witness of the murdered, is a moving experience. As I continue to listen to the rhetoric of our presidential election, and see again the both systemic injustice and uncritical rage which plague this country, I see those names and I long for the peace of Christ’s Kingdom. A kingdom which to many of his followers have rejected to pursue temporal power.