In the days leading up to the tenth anniversary of 9-11 I was a bit apprehensive. I didn’t feel like remembering and that felt wrong. I was unsure of my own mood, but felt called to lead people in recognizing their feelings and emotions. How to remember and what to do? What was appropriate for the innocent people who had been killed? What about the hatred, war and fear-mongering that has lingered in its wake. Our politics has grown more hyperbolic, the lines that divide us seem to have sharpened not blurred, and our American society doesn’t seem to have really learned anything. If anything we are more entrenched, more xenophobic, more ideological, and less compassionate than we were a decade ago. I wanted to do something more than just remember the dead.
Then I got the invitation to be part of an interfaith group here in North Texas that was organizing a 9-11 event. The focus was not on blind patriotism, but pride in community. There was a strong humility about the group, and the center of the day was to be conversations around tables where people from different faith communities were encouraged to talk to teach other about where they were ten years ago and where we should go now.
It was a wonderful event. Over 300 people attended. I just received a link to the video made that day in my email and needed to share it.
Those who gathered with us signed commitment cards to carry on the dialog. We will gather again in October.