2021 September 5 – The fallen heroes

PASTOR’S CORNER
In memory of the fallen heroes:
As our nation prepares to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the
deaths of over 3,000 Americans on September 11th, I would like to offer
a few reflections:
There are certain events that happen during our lives that leave a lasting
impact on those who experienced them: the assassination of JFK; the
explosion of the Space Shuttle Challenger (which I saw live as a high
school student); the attacks on the World Trade Center and the
Pentagon, and the heroes who stopped another attack in the skies over
Pennsylvania. All of these stick with us, and our responses can be very
different. Some people are filled with hatred for the evil that they saw
(and we should hate evil, and try to stop it from happening again, even
though we should pray for the conversion of those who perpetrated that
evil); others are more moved with compassion toward those who
suffered. Most of us probably experienced both on 9/11.
I have been watching the catastrophe unfolding in Afghanistan, and it
takes me back to the disastrous loss of life — both the victims and the
heroes — of 9/11, and of those who have fallen in defense of our nation
during the last 20 years of the War on Terror. Our special role as
Catholics is that we have a particular obligation toward the deceased.
Our Protestant brothers and sisters do not have an understanding of the
power of prayer for those who have died, so it falls to us to remember to
make reparation for those who have died. One of the greatest offerings
that we can make for the deceased is to pray for them at the Holy
Sacrifice of the Mass. As we return (beginning on September 4/5) to the
Sunday Mass obligation, let us remember especially all of our beloved
dead, including those killed on 9/11, during the War on Terror, and those
who just paid the ultimate price in Afghanistan.
Fr. Ben

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