15 years later: United Methodists remember 9/11

15 years later: United Methodists remember 9/11


September 11, 2001 was a day no one can forget as lives were rocked across the U.S. and the world. We reached out to United Methodists living in New York at the time for this exclusive series of stories in which church leaders and members reflect on what happened that dark day and what lessons have impacted their lives and their congregations since then. 

It was not an easy thing to relive such hard memories but those we interviewed hope their words will help others continue to work for a more peaceful world. As you mark 9/11, we share this prayer for reflection also.

O God,
In commemorating this tragedy,
we give you thanks for your presence
in our time of need
and we seek to worship you in Spirit and in truth,
our guide and our guardian. Amen.

from A Prayer for the Anniversary of 9/11” by the Rev. Jeremy Pridgeon

United Methodists Recall 9/11 in New York

The terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 shut down New York City and left residents in a state of shock. Churches opened their doors to comfort and care for all who came to seek refuge and pray for healing. As we mark the 15th anniversary of that awful day, United Methodist church members who lived in the area then recall how New York congregations responded to the needs of the community after 9/11. (To view the video, click here.)


Responding to hate: 9/11 and the power of love

One of Jesus’ most difficult commands is to love our enemies. “Just as your heavenly Father is complete in showing love to everyone, so also you must be complete,” he says (Matthew 5:48 CEB).

Following the terror attacks of September 11, 2001, United Methodists in New York City have been finding ways to respond to an act of hate with love. (To read the full story, click here.)

9/11 in New York: Rev. K Karpen

The Rev. K Karpen remembers the beautiful blue sky over New York City on the morning of September 11, 2001. He also recalls the events of that day when his first thought was to open the doors of The Church of St. Paul and St. Andrew near Ground Zero so that people would have a place to pray. Karpen recalls that the United Methodist St. Paul and St. Andrew became a gathering place for Christians, Jews, Muslims, and people of all faiths. (To view the video, click here.)

9/11 in New York: Rev. Stephen Bauman

The Rev. Stephen Bauman remembers the standing room only crowds that packed Christ Church United Methodist in the days and weeks after September 11, 2001. Bauman says in the aftermath of 9/11 the city “rose to its best,” with neighbors helping and consoling neighbors, and churches opening their doors to those without a church home. Bauman recalls a worship service where city sanitation workers rushed in to be part of the prayers. (To view the video, click here.)

9/11 in New York: Rev. Elyse Ambrose

The Rev. Elyse Ambrose is too young to remember much about the events of September 11, 2001. Ambrose moved to New York City from Georgia and currently serves as the Associate Pastor of Social Justice and Small Groups at Church of the Village United Methodist. She says 9/11 brought an opportunity for dialogue which continues today and it is her job as a pastor to keep the conversation going. (To view the video, click here.)