Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of September 16, 2002
Students commemorate Sept. 11
By RENATO GANDIA
WCR Staff Writer
They were not there. They just saw most of it on television or read stories in newspapers and magazines.
But they too were impacted by the tragedy that happened in the U.S. a year ago.
So, close to 300 students and teachers at John Paul II High School commemorated the Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. with a solemn prayer service.
Praying for world peace, wisdom for world leaders, comfort for the bereaved and strength for the weak, pupils lit candles and wore Canadian pins with red, blue and white ribbons.
"You can really feel how sad it was," Katy Vaters, 15, told the WCR after the celebration.
The 20-minute prayer service moved Christine Phillips, who realized simple prayers can help others. And Mike Kendrick thinks humanity can weather any tragedy and stand together - if people resort to prayer and spirituality.
A year ago, the students sent a chain of crosses with prayers and words of encouragement to the people of New York.
The chain was sent to St. Peter's Parish near the Ground Zero. In August, the school received a letter from Sister Rita Mastrogiacomo, who saw the chain of crosses displayed at the back of the church.
Mastrogiacomo, who now works at Sacred Heart School in Kearny, N.J., was in ministry at St. Paul's Parish in Airdrie from 1997 to 2000.
She said in her letter, "How happy I was to read it was made by students from Alberta. What comfort that chain has brought to so many people. Like all those little crosses chained together, I felt connected to you students from far away. It brings to mind how our faith binds us as a true faith community."
And school teacher and chaplain Matthew Hoven told the students, "The pope's message at the WYD that a tiny light lifts the heavy lid of darkness should be always in our hearts."