There’s a building in lower Manhattan that has weathered the fires of the Revolutionary War and watched the greatest city in the world grow up around it. It’s called St. Paul’s Chapel. But you might know it by another name – the Little Chapel That Stood. Located less than 100 yards away from the World Trade Center, it was given that nickname after it survived the collapse of the Twin Towers on September 11th, 2001.
During the hours and days following the 9/11 terrorist attacks, St. Paul’s was used as an operating base for first responders. It became a place where thousands of volunteers from all different faiths came together in a desperate attempt to work through the tragedy. Members served hot meals and aided in the clean up efforts. They offered comfort to those who had lost loved ones.
During times of darkness and tragedy, we can ask the question: “Where is God?” But I think the Little Church might point us toward part of the answer. We know that even in the Valley of the Shadow of Death, God is with us. Christ has joined himself to our humanity, becoming one of us, a light shining into our darkness. He suffers with us, his heart breaks with our hearts and it is by his spirit that we are comforted and healed.
The Little Church That Stood continues to remind us that even in times of great tragedy, God is there – and there is hope in him, through Christ our Lord. The church as a whole stands as a witness, reminding us that God does not allow anything in this life to occur that he will not completely redeem in the fullness of time. As we remember those who lost their lives on September 11th, I pray that we will also remember that our Lord was, is and will forever be there with them and with us.
I’m Joseph Tkach, Speaking of LIFE.