Friday, September 18, 2009

Day of Service

I know this post is a week late, but it's been on my mind so I thought I'd share. This year, as 9/11 approached, I found that I wasn't looking forward to all the heart-wrenching speeches and film clips that would be on every media channel. I wasn't even in the mood to have my annual cry through this tribute*. I just felt there had to be a better way to memorialize the victims of September 11 than tugging our collective heartstrings.

That's why I'm grateful to have heard an NPR interview that offered a more positive alternative. The interviewee was Jay Winuk, whose brother was a volunteer firefighter who lost his life trying to help others in the Twin Towers on 9/11. Since so many died in an effort to serve others that day, and so many more gave blood and performed other acts of service in the aftermath, Jay Winuk has labored to have the day declared a national day of service.

I like the idea of honoring the fallen by doing something positive in their name, and countering hatred with love. I found a little act of service to do this year, and next year I want to take time to plan something a little more significant. We'll see what I come up with.

*Though, of course, I did both watch and cry after all--and it amazes me that those images can still touch me so deeply. I suppose people who remember Pearl Harbor feel the same way.

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