Commemorations of the tragic events of September 11, 2001 have spread from Episcopal congregations in the United States to Anglican churches around the world.
Special prayers will be said throughout the day in England's Canterbury Cathedral on Wednesday, September 11, 2002. A minute's silence will be held at 1:46 p.m. local time, the time that the first plane hit the north tower of the World Trade Center in New York. In addition, Dean Robert Willis will conduct a service of Holy Eucharist in the Chapel of Our Lady Undercroft in the Crypt at 2:00 p.m.. Candles will be available throughout the day, together with prayer cards, and there will also be books of condolence in which anyone may express their feelings about the events of September 11, 2001. These will be sent to the US Ambassador in London.
'We are very aware of the warmth and long friendship that the people of the USA have for Canterbury Cathedral,' said Dean Willis. 'We will keep them in our prayers at this time of remembrance and reflection.'
Australians have already begun commemorations of the attacks. On the last sitting day of the Australian Federal Parliament, August 29, the leader of the Labor Party, Simon Crean, named the ten Australians who died: Kevin Dennis; Alberto Dominguez; Elisa Ferraina; Craig Neil Gibson; Peter Gyulavary; Yvonne Kennedy; Andrew Knox; Lesley Anne Thomas; Steve Tompsett and Leanne Whiteside.
On September 11, 'The World's Biggest Hug for Peace' will be sponsored by the World Peace Society of the University of Wollongong, south of Sydney. In an attempt to break the previous Guinness world record of 1802 people, the event will include a one minute 'silent hug' for victims of war everywhere.
Ecumenical remembrances are scheduled for Anglican churches and cathedrals across Australia. Staff from the Embassy of the United States in Canberra will attend a non-denominational memorial service September 11 at St. Christopher's Cathedral in Manuka, organized by the Prime Minister's department with representatives of various denominations, families of the victims and members of government taking part. In Melbourne, St Paul's Anglican Cathedral will hold a memorial service on September 11 with the theme 'Remembering September 11: in solidarity with the victims of terror everywhere.' Bishop Alexis Bilindabagabo of Rwanda will be the guest speaker. He has participated in peace-building and reconciliation processes since surviving his own experiences in Rwanda in 1994.
Trinity Parish in New York is offering its September 11 services streamed live on the Web and on the Episcopal Cathedral Teleconferencing Network from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Eastern time (US). The centerpiece of the day will be a service at 11 a.m., at which the Archbishop of Canterbury, George Carey, will preach, and Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold will participate. During the service, the Lord Mayor of the City of London, the Right Honorable Michael Oliver, will present Trinity with a bell in memory of those who died on September 11.
The service will be Choral Evensong, featuring the Trinity Choir. It is timed to enable the British Broadcasting Corporation's classical music station to broadcast it live in the United Kingdom. American and British networks have expressed interest in televising live excerpts of the service. The Trinity Choir will repeat its offering of Choral Evensong at 6:00 p.m. New York time. Between 2 and 6 p.m., Trinity will offer presentations by New York financial leaders, interspersed with concerts. Full details are available on the Trinity website: www.trinitywallstreet.org. For a full program, go to 'Trinity Events for 9-11' on the home page.