This has been hard to start to write, because the natural desire to pen words that end up looking like #@%&^! is hard to fight.
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, in his majesty and infinite wisdom, has decided that people who pray have no place in the 10th Anniversary ceremony honoring the victims of that horrible day ten years ago when terrorist scumbags decided their religion dictated we as Americans must die.
Religious leaders are calling on Mayor Michael Bloomberg to reverse course and offer clergy a role in the ceremony commemorating the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center.
Rudy Washington, a deputy mayor in former Mayor Rudolph Giuliani’s administration, said he’s outraged. Mr. Washington organized an interfaith ceremony at Yankee Stadium shortly after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.
“This is America, and to have a memorial service where there’s no prayer, this appears to be insanity to me,” said Mr. Washington, who has suffered severe medical problems connected to the time he spent at Ground Zero. “I feel like America has lost its way.”
Mayor Bloomberg has lost his mind as well as his way.
One man who died on Sept. 11 did so praying over others. Father Mychal F. Judge, a Chaplain in the New York City Fire Department since 1992, hurried to the scene of the attack as soon as he heard of it.
Upon meeting up with the last decent Mayor of New York, Rudy Giuliani asked Father Judge to pray for the victims of the attack and the city itself. He did that and more.
He had been rushing around, horrified and in shock, but somehow “putting one foot in front of the other”, giving comfort, being seen giving last rites to a fallen firefighter, and asking for God’s intervention;
At that very moment, Judge was in the lobby of the north tower. A member of the fire patrol told him he was needed on the mezzanine and he headed for the escalator as unhesitatingly as a firefighter.
“I’m needed,” he was heard to say.
On the mezzanine, Judge stood alone at a plate-glass window overlooking the carnage and devastation. A Fire Department photographer entered and heard him praying aloud.
“Jesus, please end this right now! God please end this!”
Yet another jumper struck the plaza outside and then there was a rumbling as if the sky had been torn open. Judge dashed out on the plaza apparently thinking the north tower was coming down, but then he seemed to realize it was the south. He rushed back inside and most likely died when a hurricane of dust and debris caught him on his way back down the escalator.
Father Judge is a man that won’t soon be forgotten;
Over the years, Father Mychal won the hearts of the firefighters and their families by his charismatic Irish personality and warm Franciscan outreach to them in all their needs – baptisms, weddings, funerals, hospital visits – wherever and whenever he was sought. He was also active in a diverse ministry to various groups throughout the Metropolitan area.
More than 2,800 people attended the Mass of Christian Burial for Father Mychal on Saturday, September 15 at St. Francis of Assisi Church in Manhattan. Father Mychal was buried at Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Totowa, NJ. He is survived by two sisters, Erin McTernan and Dympna Jessich.
If Bloomberg had been Mayor instead of Giuliani, Fr. Judge wouldn’t have been welcome at the scene.
At least, not given the warm welcome he gave those who wished to build a mosque so close to the scene the building housing it was hit by aircraft landing gear.