WASHINGTON ¬ As the 10th anniversary of the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, neared, the president of the U.S. bishops pledged “today and always to reject hatred and resist terrorism” in a statement reflecting on 9/11.
“A decade later we remain resolved to reject extreme ideologies that perversely misuse religion to justify indefensible attacks on innocent civilians, to embrace persons of all religions, including our Muslim neighbors, and to welcome refugees seeking safety,” said Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan of New York in his message, “A Time for Remembrance, Resolve and Renewal: Statement on the Tenth Anniversary of 9/11.”
“We steadfastly refrain from blaming the many for the actions of a few and insist that security needs can be reconciled with our immigrant heritage without compromising either one,” Archbishop Dolan said in the message, which was released Sept. 8 in Washington.
“Gratefully mindful of the continuing sacrifices of the men and women in our armed forces, and their families, we also resolve to bring a responsible end to the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq,” he added.
“In remembering the fateful events of Sept. 11, 2001, may we resolve to put aside our differences and join together in the task of renewing our nation and world,” Archbishop Dolan said.
“We reverently recall” those who died, were injured, lost loved ones and responded to the sites of the jet crashes at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and a field in Shanksville, Pa., the New York leader said. On that day, he added, “we turned to prayer, and then turned to one another to offer help and support. Hands were folded in prayer and opened in service to those who had lost so much.”
The archbishop said, “This 10th anniversary of 9/11 can be a time of renewal. Ten years ago, we came together across religious, political, social and ethnic lines to stand as one people to heal wounds and defend against terrorism.
“As we face today’s challenges of people out of work, families struggling and the continuing dangers of wars and terrorism, let us summon the 9/11 spirit of unity to confront our challenges,” he continued. “Let us pray that the lasting legacy of 9/11 is not fear, but rather hope for a world renewed.”