A 9-11 Homage to Political Correctness

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Much of official Washington, D.C., including the president, will attend the National Cathedral’s series of interfaith events on September 11 called “A Call to Compassion.”  Unlike the New York 9-11 commemoration, which is excluding all clergy and formal prayers, the D.C. events at least acknowledge America’s spirituality.

The National Cathedral is facing either bad luck or divine displeasure; recent earthquake damage and a collapsing crane have forced the cathedral to move its 9-11 events to a nearby synagogue and the Kennedy Center, with a spokesman explaining the cathedral is going “on the road.” More seriously, the National Cathedral’s seeming view of America’s religious demographic is skewed from reality. Secular elites, and their Religious Left fellow travellers, love to imagine that America is multi-culturally, evenly divided among Christians, Muslims, Buddhist and Hindus, with some allowance for Jews.  Most surveys show about 75 to 80 percent of Americans identifying as Christian, about 2 percent as Jewish, under 1 percent as Muslim, and fewer as Hindu and Buddhist. (Some Muslim groups claim that Muslims don’t answer polls and that their actual numbers are closer to 2 percent.) About one third of Americans identify as evangelical Christian.

Apparently the National Cathedral will not include any evangelicals or non-Episcopalian Protestants in its “A Call to Compassion” 9-11 remembrance. It reportedly will include the president of the Islamic Society of North America and a Muslim musician, along with a Buddhist nun, a Hindu priest, a rabbi, and a Roman Catholic bishop. The National Cathedral is an Episcopal church that styles itself as “spiritual home for the nation.”  It is often the stage for great civic pageants, such as Ronald Reagan’s funeral, and the post 9-11 prayer service featuring evangelist Billy Graham in one of his last major national appearances. Both were attended by all of America’s living presidents, except Nancy Reagan represented her ailing husband at the 9-11 service. The post-9-11 event included a wide range of Christian clergy as well as a rabbi and imam. Graham, then already an octogenarian with over 50 years of public life that included ties to every president dating to Truman, masterfully preached a moving sermon that was inclusive yet still deeply Christian. As America’s most prominent clergyman, he showed that even dreaded evangelicals can behave at great national events.

The National Cathedral seemingly believes that such an important public event can only be entrusted primarily to clerics of its own dwindling Episcopal denomination. Over the last 40 years, America’s population increased by 50 percent, while the Episcopal Church’s membership declined by 50 percent.  But the shriveling communion still has many beautiful buildings and enough well-heeled, WASPs with trust funds who can maintain them.   The nearly all Anglo white denomination is among the least diverse in the nation.  But according to the National Cathedral, “A Call to Compassion” will emphasize “diversity.”  By “diversity,” they seem primarily to mean the Islamic Society of North America, whose own radical ties and controversies call into question its claims to represent most American Muslims.

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  • Curtis

    This is an interfaith service. There is one representative from each major religion. Evangelical Christianity is not a major religion, but is a subset of Christianity, and a representative of the Christian religion is present. If evangelicals want to disassociate themselves from the Christian faith, they should go ahead and do that. But if they are Christian, they are being represented at this service and should stop complaining.

    • Ed Norton

      Well stated, Curtis.

  • Asher

    I think that everyone should start praying at the service, no matter what faith you are. What is Bloomberg going to do Usher us out for Praying to our God. What harm is there in having clergy there? I am sure the Muslims will be chanting and praying if the Ground Zero Mosque is built.

  • Pathena

    Why is the National Cathedral sponsoring a "Time of Compassion" as a commemoration of the 9/11 terrorist attacks? I have no compassion whatsoever for the Islamic fanatics who committed these attacks or for other Islamic fanatics like the murderer at Fort Hood. I honor the passengers of United 93 who stopped their hijacked plane from continuing on to Washington, D.C. to do who knows what damage and have visited Shanksville, Pennsylvania where the passengers forced the plane to crash.

    • Jaladhi

      My sentiments, exactly! What is wrong with these National Cathedral morons??? They can't see the truth and light!!

  • StephenD

    Pathena is absolutely right! I hold zero compassion for those that committed these atrocities and those that celebrated them. I hold zero compassion for those "clerics" who continue to espouse a "religion" that would sanction such acts or for those that would whitewash it. I hold monumental compassion for those that lost loved ones on that fateful day and for those yet to be lost to this scourge until we begin to fight back.

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