Sunday, August 5, 2007

Fr. James's Sunday Homily

Stepping Stones Towards Eternity
The summer following the tragic events of September 11, I took the time to visit New York City and “ground-zero” during my home visit to Binghamton, NY. My visit to Manhattan gave me the opportunity to reconnect with a high-school friend whom I had not seen since 1979. He works in an office building located three blocks from “ground-zero”. We met at his apartment on the north side of Manhattan. The 45-minute subway ride took us to the spot where the World Trade Center once proudly stood. Although my friend was one of the many who could walk away from lower Manhattan through the billowing cloud of smoke and dust, he graciously allowed me to visit something that I had to see. I needed to stand on hallowed ground and pray for the dead.

As we got off of the subway and walked towards “ground-zero”, I quickly began to perceive the horrific suffering of the innocent and the heroic. Hundreds of people lined up along the fences to look, to pray, to remember and to cry.

I gazed upon the craters where the towers once rested, the infamous iron cross, the American flag proudly flying in the gentle breeze and the countless memorials erected along the surrounding sidewalks. I reflected upon the fundamental questions of human existence. Who am I? What is the purpose of life? What happens when this life comes to an end? Read the remainder of the homily here.

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