Peace was the theme for the Sept. 9 opening Mass of the new school year at Divine Mercy Catholic Academy, Ozone Park. Father Paul Palmiotto, pastor, celebrated the Mass. He told students that peace begins with them and they can spread it to the world. The 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks was remembered during the Prayers of the Faithful. Students processed outside to Nativity B.V.M. Church’s 9/11 memorial towers, where flowers were placed, prayers offered and “God Bless America” was sung. Each class presented a dove inscribed with prayers and wishes for peace. These “peace doves” were carried into church and then placed on the school fence facing the memorial.
At St. Athanasius Church, Bensonhurst, Msgr. David Cassato, pastor and a chaplain to the NYC Police Dept., and the priests of the parish celebrated a Mass for the victims of the tragic events of 9/11. Following the liturgy, the pastor asked all members of the congregation extend their hands in blessing upon all first responders who attended. A candlelight procession was conducted to the parish’s 9/11 memorial outside the church where flowers were placed and prayers were recited. In his homily, Msgr. Cassato reminded participants that “We never, never, never forget but we move on. Nothing can deter us from living our lives in justice, decency and peace. Today, many people in this city are suffering. Let us pray for the rebuilding of strength to go on and follow the way of Jesus.”
At Our Lady of Angels parish, Bay Ridge, a man and his dog stopped by for a silent prayer at the 9/11 memorial in the parish’s Flower Pot Yard. The memorial is a piece of steel from the World Trade Center that is bent in the shape of a cross.
“The Flight of the Sparrow: A Remembrance” was performed before an audience of 300 in St. Sebastian Church, Woodside, on Sept. 11. The play is set in 2011 and consists of a series of monologues given by peoples whose lives were changed by the events of 9/11 with musical interludes performed by the choirs of St. Sebastian. The writer and director of “The Sparrow” is Mary Frances Grace, director of music ministries at St. Sebastian parish.
Father James Cunningham, administrator of Holy Name parish, Park Slope, placed floral displays and led prayers at the parish memorial outside the church in memory of the victims of 9/11. Parish buildings were draped with American flags.