1) We feel that our country, the United States, is under attack.
2) All Americans should stand together to bring the perpetrators to justice.
3) We warn against any generalizations that will only serve to help the criminals and incriminate the innocent.
4) We offer our resources and resolve to help the victims of these intolerable acts, and we pray to God to protect and bless America.
Statement from evangelist Billy Graham (more responses from Christian leaders):
"I call upon all Americans to pray especially for our President and for all who advise him, that they may have divine wisdom as they respond to this insane and horrific act.
"In times like this we realize how weak and inadequate we are, and our greatest need is to turn in repentance and faith to the God of all mercy and the Father of all comfort. If ever there was a time for us to turn to God and to pray as a nation, it is now, that this evil will spread no further. It is also a time for us to remember the words of the Psalmist: 'God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea ... He maketh wars to cease unto the end of the earth; he breaketh the bow and cutteth the spear in sunder; he burneth the chariot in the fire. Be still and know that I am God ... The Lord of hosts is with us.'" (Psalm 46:1-2, 9-11)
Excerpted from an address by Pope John Paul II (more):
In a special way I reach out to the families of the dead and the injured, and assure them of my spiritual closeness. I entrust to the mercy of the Most High the helpless victims of this tragedy, for whom I offered Mass this morning, invoking upon them eternal rest. May God give courage to the survivors; may he sustain the rescue-workers and the many volunteers who are presently making an enormous effort to cope with such an immense emergency. I ask you, dear brothers and sisters, to join me in prayer for them.
Let us beg the Lord that the spiral of hatred and violence will not prevail.
May the Blessed Virgin, Mother of Mercy, fill the hearts of all with wise thoughts and peaceful intentions.
Excerpted from the initial statement of the National Council of the Churches of Christ:
...We hold the families of the victims in our prayers. We acknowledge the grief, sense of vulnerability, loss and fear that result from these attacks.
We condemn these vicious attacks in the strongest possible terms...
We call on people of faith to reach out to one another.
We especially urge churches, synagogues, mosques and other houses of worship to join in prayer and practical help. We must stand united against the temptation to retaliate against innocent persons.
We can all pray. We can respond to calls for donations of blood and other practical assistance.
In this the worst attack on U.S. territory since Pearl Harbor, we must turn our eyes to the God of us all. In Psalm 23, we are promised God's care even "in the presence of our enemies." May God guide us in these days of pain."
Excerpted from a statement by the U. S. Conference of Catholic Bishops:
We call upon all our fellow citizens to renew their trust in God and to turn away from the bitter fruits of the kind of hatred which is the source of this tragedy. Especially let us not engage in ethnic, religious, or national stereotyping for what may be the acts of a few irrational terrorists. As the Catholic Bishops of the United States, we unite in prayer to the Lord our God in the words of the Psalmist:
In you, O Lord, I take refuge...
Incline your ear to me, and save me.
Be my rock of refuge, a stronghold to give me safety. (Psalm 71)
Statement from Bishop T.D. Jakes, author, Beliefnet columnist, and pastor of The Potter's House in Dallas, Texas
The terrorist attacks on the United States have stunned our nation. I want to call all Americans to pray. Pray for the victims and their families. Pray for the emergency workers so overwhelmed by these multiple incidents. Pray for President Bush as he sorts through the details of this horrific attack on our nation. Pray for the people so lost and desperate that they would resort to such an act. While we can never understand why these things happen, we must remember that God is with us in this time of pain and loss. He will not leave us or forsake us. This is a time for prayer, for courage and for Americans to support one another as we carry on.
Excerpted from Pat Robertson's address:
Father, we pray for America now. We need revival, Lord. We need Your protection. Lord, as great as we are, this act of monstrous terror shows us how vulnerable we are, how weak we are in the midst of all of our strength. And Lord, only in Your power can we survive. Only through the power of the Lord God of Hosts can we survive. We pray, Lord, for revival; that we might have a shield of Faith and a shield of prayer; that, Lord, throughout this land there might be revival. For the families of those who perished in this terrible tragedy, we ask for Your comfort in this moment. We ask, Lord, for wisdom for our President and the leaders who will be taking action in regard to this. Lord, give wisdom to those who lead this nation, that Your name might be honored in our midst. We hold this whole thing before You and ask for Your divine intervention.
In Jesus' name, we ask it. Amen.
Excerpted from a statement by Dr. James Dobson, founder and president of Focus on the Family:
"America has always rallied and drawn strength when it has faced tragedy and danger-and it will do so again. We need to pull our loved ones close, and to turn to the God of our fathers Who gave us solace and guidance in past troubling times.
Specifically, I pray that the Lord will use this horrible experience to draw us to Himself. We have become self-sufficient and arrogant in recent years-as though we have no need of divine help. It is time for us to do some soul-searching, quite literally, as we reflect on this tragic day."
Excerpted from a statement by Charles W. Colson, founder of Prison Fellowship Ministries:
Make no mistake about it. Our nation has sustained the most severe attack in nearly two centuries, and the response must be proportionate, but swift and sure. Anything less will be inadequate in light of our responsibility as the leader of the free world, and the responsibility of our government to restore order.
At the same time, the purpose of terrorism is to destabilize free societies and to take away our liberties. We cannot succumb to this assault on our deepest beliefs by restricting the civil liberties that make this nation great.
The soul of our nation is facing one of its darkest hours. May God help us.
Excerpted from a statement by Franklin Graham (more responses from Christian leaders):
These atrocities remind us how precious life is and how important it is to be spiritually ready to stand before and give account to Almighty God.
My prayer is that the people of this nation will turn their eyes and hearts to the Lord and seek His wisdom and protection. May all Americans pray for our president and government leaders that God would guide and direct them as they lead our nation during these dark hours.
Excerpted from the Dalai Lama's letter to President Bush:
I am attending a special prayer for the United States and its people at our main temple today... We need to think seriously whether a violent reaction is the right thing to do and in the greater interest of the nation and the people in the long run. I believe violence will only increase the cycle of violence. But how do we deal with hatred and anger which are often the root causes of such senseless violence? This is a very difficult question, especially when it concerns a nation and we have certain fixed conceptions of how to deal with such attacks.
Excerpted from a statement by Jerry Falwell (more responses from Christian leaders):
Obviously, war has been launched against the United States. While we don't know who is responsible, we can be assured that our government is working to find out who is responsible. Right now, our government and our president need our prayers.
The only weapon we have as believers in Jesus Christ is prayer. In the Bible, II Chronicles 7:14 says, "If my people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray, and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin, and heal their land."
I would like to call our nation to prayer: prayer for the United States, for the victims of these terrible tragedies, and for our president and others as they make important decisions in the ensuing days.
Dr. Uma Mysorekar, President of the Hindu Temple Society of North America
This is an atrocious act and human beings in general should condemn it. At the this time, what the victims need is solace and help. Financial help and emotional help, and lots of prayer. The only solace we have is our faith. When we ask the Lord for solace and justice we should ask not with vindictiveness but hoping that people can bring an end to such actions anywhere in the universe. Those who may have committed this crime have total disregard for the Supreme Being.
Om Sarve Bhavanthu Sukhina
Sarve Santhu Nira Maya
Sarve Bhadrani Pashyanthu
Ma Kashchith Dukkha Bhaag Bhaveth
Oh Lord, may all of mankind be happy,
Let everyone be healthy,
Let everyone be safe,
Let no one experience pain or suffering.