9/11 – The Impact

11 years ago, America suffered a very chilling and rude awakening to hatred and death on our homeland.  That day changed America forever in so many ways.

As I walked outside yesterday, the day and the weather were exactly the same to me as they were 11 years ago.  Crisp temperatures, beautiful blue skies, not a cloud to be found.  Just as it was on that fateful day.  Like you I have many of my own memories of that time.  I did not know anyone that was murdered that day, but many of you may have.  The lives of those families were forever changed.

As I am a big baseball fan, I remember President Bush throwing out the first pitch at Yankee Stadium when the season resumed and the discussions about our resolve.  The incredible patriotism that captured all of us.  The new meaning of God Bless America during the 7th inning stretch.  The changes that have happened to security that have touched all of us.

I watched the Red Sox and Yankees game last night on TV and was reminded again of the power of God Bless America.  State Trooper Dan Clark sang one of the best renditions of the song that I have ever heard.  The video is fairly short but when you see his passion and hear his voice, I hope that you will be moved as I was.

As a Yankee fan, I heard Ronan Tynan sing God Bless America at Yankee Stadium many times.  Never failed to get chills from his performance.  Check this out.  Turn it up.

One more thing.  It was mentioned to me yesterday just how much the attacks on 9/11 have cost America over the last 11 years.  The impact that Bin Laden had on America is staggering and just continues to erode our families, lifestyles and economy.  Here are some facts:

  • 6,570 US troops have been killed in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars
  • 2,977 people died on 9/11
  • The costs to America for the two wars is conservatively estimated as $3 – 5 Trillion dollars
  • With almost 50 percent of returning troops eligible to receive some level of disability payment, and more than 600,000 treated so far in veterans’ medical facilities, we now estimate that future disability payments and health care costs will total $600 billion to $900 billion
  • The social costs, reflected in veteran suicides (which have topped 18 per day in recent years) and family breakups, are incalculable
  • The United States has spent more than $7.6 trillion on defense and homeland security since the attacks of September 11, 2001

Our nation has $17 trillion dollars in financial debt.  As stated above the cost to our society and people is incalculable.  Bin Laden did much more than commit murder than day.

Take a moment today.  Be grateful for what you have and do something that helps someone else.  We are all Americans and it is up to us to continue to build on the incredible foundation of kindness and society that our forefathers built and intended to sustain.   God Bless America.


St. Paul’s Chapel – Coincidence 2?

St. Paul’s Chapel was not damaged on September 11, 2001.  Was this a miracle?

Last week I mentioned the book The Harbinger by Jonathan Cahn.  www.amazon.com/The+Harbinger He has done a fabulous job of linking historical prophecies to the fates of Israel and the United States in this book and I would like to share another coincidence that makes you really think about the ancient prophets and the meaning of their writings.  The key writing highlighted in the book is Isaiah 9:10.

“The bricks have fallen down, but we will rebuild with dressed stone;the fig trees have been felled, but we will replace them with cedars.”

George Washington inaugural took place in 1789 in New York City, the first capital of the United States.  As we know, our founding fathers were very strong believers in God as many of our foundational documents reference.  Here is the final paragraph of George Washington’s inaugural speech.

“Having thus imparted to you my sentiments as they have been awakened by the occasion which brings us together, I shall take my present leave; but not without resorting once more to the benign Parent of the Human Race in humble supplication that, since He has been pleased to favor the American people with opportunities for deliberating in perfect tranquility, and dispositions for deciding with unparalleled unanimity on a form of government for the security of their union and the advancement of their happiness, so His divine blessing may be equally conspicuous in the enlarged views, the temperate consultations, and the wise measures on which the success of this Government must depend.”

After the speech, George Washington, along with members of the United States Congress, worshiped at St. Paul’s Chapel on his Inauguration Day, on April 30, 1789.  Washington also attended services at St. Paul’s during the two years New York City was the country’s capital. Above Washington’s pew is an 18th-century oil painting of the Great Seal of the United States; adopted in 1782.

The chapel survived the Great New York City Fire of 1776 when a quarter of New York City (then confined to the lower tip of Manhattan), including Trinity Church, burned following the British capture of the city after the Battle of Long Island during the American Revolutionary War.

The Chapel was turned into a makeshift memorial shrine following the September 11 attacks.  The church survived without even a broken window. Church history declares it was spared by a miracle sycamore on the northwest corner of the property that was hit by debris. The tree’s root has been preserved in a bronze memorial by sculptor Steve Tobin. While the church’s organ was badly damaged by smoke and dirt, the organ has been refurbished and is in use again.

The rear of St. Paul’s Chapel faces Church Street, opposite the east side of the World Trade Center site. After the attack on September 11, 2001, which led to the collapse of the twin towers of the World Trade Center, St. Paul’s Chapel served as a place of rest and refuge for recovery workers at the WTC site.

For eight months, hundreds of volunteers worked 12 hour shifts around the clock, serving meals, making beds, counseling and praying with fire fighters, construction workers, police and others. Massage therapists, chiropractors, podiatrists and musicians also tended to their needs.

The fence around the church grounds became the main spot for visitors to place impromptu memorials to the event. After it became filled with flowers, photos, teddy bears, and other paraphernalia, chapel officials decided to erect a number of panels on which visitors could add to the memorial. Estimating that only 15 would be needed in total, they eventually required 400.

So St. Paul’s survives not only the Great New York City fire in 1776 but it survives the devastation of September 11th because the lone sycamore tree protected it.  Coincidence?  What do you think?

Let me know what you think about this blog by commenting below.