Statements from leaders of the Episcopal Church and the Anglican Communion

September 11, 2001

Statement from the Archbishop of Canterbury

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr George Carey, has spoken of his deep distress and sadness at the news from the United States.

'I was appalled to learn of the terrible tragedies across the United States. The scale of the carnage and suffering is truly devastating. My thoughts, prayers and sympathies are with all those caught up in these horrific events.'

The Archbishop, who is president of the worldwide Anglican Communion, has been following developments closely and has been in personal touch with colleagues and friends in the United States.

Statement from the Secretary General of the Anglican Communion

'The death and destruction that we are seeing from New York following such violence and terrorism has devastated us here in London beyond belief. Our prayers are with those suffering at this very moment, for the dead and the their families and friends and indeed for those in fear wondering what the next moment may bring to them. Our prayers, affection and deepest concerns are with all the people of United States. We from afar can pray and I ask all people of goodwill to join us in prayer for America and its people.'

The Rev. Canon John L Peterson

Statement from Archbishop Njongonkulu Ndungane of Cape Town, South Africa

'As the world watches the horror of the World Trade Towers tragedy and America's pain, our hearts go out to all people of that nation wherever they may be and I urge all South Africans, regardless of faith, to join forces in prayer.

'We need to pray for the families of all those dead and injured.

'We need to pray for all involved in emergency services in New York and other affected areas.

'We need to pray that the American leadership is granted wisdom to deal with this horrific situation.

'We need to pray for our world.'

Statement from the Church of Nigeria

'Beloved in Christ,

'We in Nigeria are shocked and horrified at the devastation leading to catastrophic losses of lives that took place in the wake of the unprecedented terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center towers in New York, the Pentagon in Washington and near Pittsburgh.

'I had hoped, when I left New York, Sunday evening, to return to Nigeria and send back to you a joyful 'arrived safely home' message but never ever contemplated this changed role.

'The Church of Nigeria commiserates with you on this day of national grief and be assured of our prayerful support in the trying days ahead.

'Yours in Christ,

The Rev. Canon Emmanuel Adekola

Church of Nigeria Communication Officer'

Statement from the Rt. Rev. Mark Sisk, Bishop of New York

'The terrorist attack on innocent people in the City of New York, Washington DC and in fact an attack on all the people of this great land is an unspeakable act of cowardice. This emphatically has nothing to do with religion and everything to do with people overcome by the venom of hatred. It is beyond comprehension how anything like this could have happened. Our prayers are with the families of those who have been killed and those who tragically will lose their lives in the hours ahead. We salute and applaud the courage of those brave fire, police and EMS personnel who risk their lives to save thousands of innocent New Yorkers. We pray for those brave men and women who have died. Our churches are responding by opening their doors and conducting vigils. We pray we will soon see the end of this horror.'

Massachusetts Episcopal bishops lead prayers 'for peace and for our enemies'

In response to the morning's unfolding news of terrorist attacks, the Rt. Rev. Barbara C. Harris, Bishop Suffragan of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts, led a noonday service of prayer and Eucharist at the Cathedral Church of St. Paul in downtown Boston. She was assisted by the Rt. Rev. Bud Cederholm, Bishop Suffragan, at the solemn service marked by periods of prayer and silence and the singing of hymns 'O God of love, O King of peace,' and 'God Save Our Native Land.'

'Our intention for gathering is for remembrance of all those affected by the tragedies of today,' Bishop Harris told the congregation of about 50 persons who had gathered from adjacent offices and the downtown area. 'Let us pray for peace. Let us pray for our enemies,' Bishop Harris said.

'Almighty God our heavenly Father, guide the nations of the world into the way of justice and truth, and establish among them that peace which is the fruit of righteousness, that they may become the kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,' Bishop Harris prayed from the Episcopal Church's Book of Common Prayer, concluding, 'O God, the Father of all, whose Son commanded us to love our enemies: Lead them and us from prejudice to truth; deliver them and us from hatred, cruelty, and revenge; and in your good time enable us all to stand reconciled before you; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.'

The Cathedral Church of St. Paul will remain open during business hours as a house of prayer for all people.

Statement from the Rt. Rev. Claude E. Payne, Bishop of Texas

'We must pray earnestly in the face of these horrific acts of terrorism. Hate creates the fertile ground for evil to flourish and the bombings in New York and Washington are a clear demonstration of the power of that evil. We must find ways to reconcile our differences which honor God's intention for us. Pray for the victims and their families, the leaders of the world who shoulder massive responsibility to bring this heinous episode to a quick resolution and for the conversion of hearts around the world to respond in a way that honors God.'

Statement from the Rt. Rev. J. Jon Bruno, Bishop of Los Angeles

'Let us unite in prayer at this distressing time. Even through these horrible events, obviously the worst assault on this nation since Pearl Harbor, God is our strength and our refuge. I ask all in the diocese to pray and to work in every way possible in the interest of peace and calm amid this crisis.'

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