Marking the moment our world changed

Communities plan
memorials, services
commemorating 9/11

Communities plan
memorials, services
commemorating 9/11

To everything there is a season. Last Sept. 11 began a season of grieving for all Americans. As the one-year anniversary of the terrorist attacks approaches, we find ourselves entering a new season of reflection, remembrance, and reaffirmation.

Last December Congress enacted a law designating Sept. 11 as Patriot Day. Monmouth County municipalities will fly the flag at half-staff. Borough employees are encouraged to observe a moment of silence at 8:46 a.m. — one year to the minute after American Airlines Flight 11 careened into the north tower of the World Trade Center.

Communities throughout the area are marking Sept. 11 in different ways — through candlelight and prayer vigils, in memorials and ceremonial services, in private contemplation or at community gatherings. The following is a list of some events that will take place in the days leading up to and immediately following Sept. 11.

OCEANPORT — The Methodist Church at 50 Main St. will have a service on Sept. 8 at 9 a.m. The mayor and council have been invited to attend, along with emergency services personnel.

RUMSON — On Sept. 8, St. George’s-by-the-River Episcopal Church, Waterman Avenue, will hold a time for prayer and reflection preceding the first anniversary of Sept. 11.

Guest preacher Jacqueline Lapsley, assistant professor of Old Testament, Princeton Theological Seminary, will deliver a sermon titled "A Widow’s Response to Job."

There will be two services — 8 a.m. with Holy Eucharist, and 10 a.m., also a Holy Eucharist service, with choir and organ. Nursery care is available at the 10 a.m. service. For more information, call (732) 842-0596.

St. George’s-by-the-River will also hold two services of Holy Eucharist on Sept. 11 at 9 a.m. and 7:30 p.m.

The solemn anniversary will be celebrated in conjunction with St. John’s Church, Little Silver. Peter Jensen will be the guest organist. For information, call (732) 842-0596.

RED BANK — On Sept. 8 at 7 p.m. the Greater Red Bank Clergy is sponsoring a 9/11 Community Observance service at the First Baptist Church, corner of Maple and Oakland streets. People of all faiths are welcome to attend.

The keynote speaker is the Rabbi Harry Levin. There will be special music and testimonials.

The program will conclude with a walk to Riverside Gardens Park, West Front Street, where candles will be lit as a sign of personal commitment to a world filled with peace for all people.

After a five-minute service in the park, an open coffee hour will be hosted by Trinity Episcopal Church, directly across from the park, where participants may continue in reflection or talk with each other. For information, call (732) 566-6891.

On Sept. 11 at 7:30 p.m. Elks Lodge No. 233, 40 W. Front St., will hold a special memorial service and candle-lighting ceremony.

Four candles will be lit in memory of the attacks on the two towers of the Trade Center, the Pentagon, and the flight that crashed in western Pennsylvania.

A fifth candle will be lit to symbolize the grief experienced by the country as a whole.

The program will include musical selections performed by the Chorus of the Atlantic barbershop quartet, a service led by lodge chaplain Gaylord Watts and reflections from attendees.

The lodge will also offer hot dogs, hamburgers and other "fast food" on the patio starting at 6 p.m.

The public is invited to attend the "fast food" dinner and the memorial service. For information, call (732) 741-9771.

Also on Sept. 11 at 8:30 p.m., there will be a silent procession from St. James Church, 112 Broad St., ending with a vigil of silent prayer at Riverside Gardens Park, West Front Street.

On Sept. 22 at 4 p.m. the borough will hold a memorial ceremony in Riverside Gardens Park, West Front Street. The program will include participation by members of the police and fire departments in honor of their fallen New York brothers.

Mayor Edward J. McKenna said that the borough decided not to hold the event on the actual anniversary of the tragedy, choosing instead to hold it on the same day a similar memorial took place last year. He stated that a permanent memorial is being developed for Riverside Gardens Park, which has been home to an informal memorial of flags, photographs and candles which sprang up spontaneously after the attacks.

For more information on the ceremony, call Pam Hughes at (732) 530-2797.

FAIR HAVEN — Mayor William E. Leonard and the Borough Council, acting in response to sentiments expressed by members of the community, have called for "a day for quiet reflection with family" to mark the 9/11 anniversary.

Councilman Thomas Gilmour said there are plans to create a permanent garden memorial in Memorial Park. A ceremony will be held when the project is completed.

SEA BRIGHT — The borough will lower its flags to half-staff and a memorial service will be held at 7:30 p.m. on Sept. 11 at the First United Methodist Church of Sea Bright, located at 1104 Ocean Ave. The program will feature readings, music and candle lighting.

Sea Bright Mayor Gregory Harquail, members of the police and fire departments, and local clergy will be among the participants.

The First United Methodist Church of Sea Bright will join other houses of worship across the state in tolling the church bell at the moment each of the four planes crashed.

The church sanctuary also will remain open all day for prayer and meditation, according to Pastor Robert J. Long.

SHREWSBURY — A candlelight vigil and brief ceremony of remembrance will be held at 7:30 p.m. on Sept. 11, on the front lawn of the Wardell House municipal building to remember those lost.

The borough also will offer its thanks to all who worked so hard at the sites of the attacks and who have helped restore a sense of security during the past year.

The mayor and Borough Council also have asked for volunteers to serve on a committee to help plan for a permanent memorial to the victims of 9/11. The committee’s task will be to determine the type and location of the memorial. At an early meeting of the committee as it was being formed, the members liked the idea of a gazebo to be built in front of the new municipal building.

It is the borough’s intention to have the memorial, whatever it may be, ready for dedication on Sept. 11, 2003.

ALL NEW JERSEY RESIDENTS — On Sept. 11, New Jersey Blood Services is holding blood drives in various locations around the state to honor those lost in last year’s tragedy.

Call 1-800-933-2566 to schedule a convenient donation appointment or to find the location nearest you.

— Jane Waterhouse