Seeking 9/11 Reconciliation
When both US president Barack Obama and Catholic Pope Benedict XVI advise you that your plans are a bad idea, that’s usually a good sign that you should think twice about what you’re doing.
Terry Jones would be well advised to listen to their advice. His tiny 30 member group, ironically named the “Dove World Outreach Church” in Gainesville, Florida, plans to burn copies of the Qur’an on the anniversary of September 11:
Jones has said he sees Koran-burning as a way of confronting Islamist terrorism. But his plans have been widely condemned by U.S. religious, political and military leaders, who say it is jeopardizing the security of U.S. military personnel abroad.
“I just want him to understand that this stunt that he is talking about pulling could greatly endanger our young men and women in uniform who are in Iraq, who are in Afghanistan,” Obama said on “Good Morning America.”
In addition to president Obama and the Pope, condemnations of the actions have rained down worldwide. Interpol warned of “tragic consequences” that “may well claim the lives of many innocent people.” The World Council of Churches, which represents 349 Christian denominations, stated that the call to burn Qur’ans “has been firmly rejected and condemned by the WCC and its member churches.” France’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that France condemns “in the strongest terms the vicious and irresponsible statements of Pastor Terry Jones.” Former presidential and vice-presidential candidates John McCain and Sarah Palin also condemned the planned action.
His actions, if they do decide to carry through as planned, will endanger American troops abroad as well as Christians living in predominantly Muslim countries. It’s sad that this pastor cannot see the pervasive negative impact of his actions. On the eve of the anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the last thing the world needs is more insensitivity … and literally fanning the flames of hatred.
As we remember the events of that infamous day, nine years ago, we would do well to reflect on our own reactions to it. The article “9/11 and You” was written by a man whose sister had a 9:00am appointment at the World Trade Center … on September 12. He struggled with anger regarding the attacks and how his sister would likely have been killed if her appointment was one day earlier, and explains what he learned from his meditations. It’s worthwhile reading for us all.
Other stories for reflection stemming from 9/11:
Remembering September 11th – On September 11, 2001 I said my first prayer. My son was a police officer with the New York Police Department.
The Call That Shook My World – The sense of loss that morning was overwhelming, both the shared loss and my personal loss.
Upcoming online chats: Join us for daily online chats! One of our features will be “Pattern for Restoration” on September 12 at 9:00 pm EDT Please join us to discuss how you can change patterns in your life from destructive to restortive.