An excerpt from Over the Hill and Gaining Speed.  From the Chapter 8, "Bearing Witness," p 27.


Last month we experienced a historic occasion.  Pope Francis, the Bishop of Rome, made his first visit to the United States.  He visited Washington, DC, New York City, and Philadelphia.  All of his stops were significant, but I was particularly touched by his visit to bear witness at the 9/11 Memorial in lower Manhattan.  Less than a week before, my husband and I were visiting New York and also made an intentional pilgrimage to Ground Zero.  It was a powerful experience.

We stood at the edge of one of the memorial reflecting pools and lightly traced our fingers across an engraved name, outlining each letter.  Each of the nearly 3,000 victims from 1993 and 2001 was remembered by an inscription.  One of my tracings was of a woman and her unborn child.  Others were fathers, mothers, spouses, sons, daughters, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, neighbors, friends and colleagues.

Each name meant something to someone and everything to others.  And all of them mean something to every American.  We feel their loss in our hearts, minds, and fingertips.  “No day shall erase you from the memory of time.

National 9/11 Memorial, New York, NY

National 9/11 Memorial, New York, NY