As the 10th anniversary of September 11 drew to a close, area churches held special services to mark the day.
The mood at was somber and introspective as the large crowd waited for the evening service to begin. The room was packed. Many people spent the day watching 9/11 commemorative programs and Youtube videos, as well as having reflective conversations with their friends, family and neighbors. It came as no surprise that many turned to church to wrap up their emotion-filled day.
First Baptist took an unusual approach by hosting the Stone Mountain Chorus, a men's chorus that performs barbershop quartet style music. They performed a "Patriot Day" concert, with songs ranging from 40s jazz to classic sacred songs. A few patriotic songs were also included.
and held a joint service and performed an inspiring musical cantata called America: We Must Not Forget. Led by Pastor Tim Hinds of Annistown Road Baptist, the performance was emotional but uplifting. With songs like "Song for the Heroes," "O God, Our Help in Ages Past," and "Let the Words of Freedom Ring," the program was clearly an appeal to believers to trust in God's power and love, while declaring the devotion to their country and God. It was a beautiful and powerful presentation. Rev. Jim Crutchfield, of Bethany Baptist, spoke encouraging and inspired words to the congregation.
sheperded by the Rev. John Byerly, also held an evening of prayer and worship. There were times for individuals to pray out loud if they felt led, while the rest of the time was simply meant to reflect and draw close to Jesus.
All three places of worship drew more people than usual for a Sunday evening. It was a testament to the fortitude of faith even in the most uncertain of times. Just as things seem their most chaotic, believers draw close to that which they believe never changes.
And, on the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attacks that killed nearly 3,000 people -- mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, children -- finding hope in tragedy honors their memories.