Anniversary of attacks brings many out to church
There was as much country as God at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church’s memorial Mass Wednesday, on the anniversary of the terrorist attacks in New York City and Washington, D.C.
While Music in the Mountains’ Festival Chorale performed Mozart’s “Requiem” at the fairgrounds, parishioners at the church sang “God Bless America” and “America the Beautiful” between prayers.
On his way into the church, parishioner Jack Rossiter said he was there to remember last year’s attacks.
“It’s the only reason I’m here today,” he said. “Never forget it.”
Dozens of Mount St. Mary’s students filed across the street from their school into the sanctuary carrying signs and gifts for the altar.
Parishioners filled the sanctuary at the Grass Valley church by 8:30 a.m. Before finding her place in a pew, a young mother took a tissue from a box an older woman held.
Although 1-year-old Chris-topher required his mother to take him outside, Margie Buonarati came to offer “a constant prayer for peace.”
Wednesday’s higher-than-usual attendance reflected last year’s renewed interest in church services.
A year ago, “People who had not come to church for years – in many years, years! – started coming back to church,” the Rev. IK told the congregation.
But people ought to remember God in good times as well as bad, exhorted the Nigerian-born IK, who filled in for vacationing priests Simon Twomey and Nicholas Phelan.
“When the world is a bed of roses, God has no place in our lives,” he said. “Why?”
“God allowed a little shake-up” on Sept. 11 that woke people up. “It was a little sign of what other countries go through and we ask why,” IK said. “But we don’t ask why when it happens in other countries.
“Let us not wait for something bad to happen (to serve God),” he said. “Let us always be grateful to him.”
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