Remembering September 11: Verdi's Requiem--Live from the Met on PBS

Grant them eternal rest, O Lord;
and may perpetual light shine upon them.

*Great Performances and The Metropolitan Opera present a special live performance of Verdi’s “Requiem” commemorating the 20th anniversary of the September 11 attacks. Conducted by Met Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin , the concert features performances by the Met orchestra, chorus and soloists Ailyn Pérez , Michelle DeYoung , Matthew Polenzani and Eric Owens . Hosted by Misty Copeland from nearby the site of the 9/11 Memorial & Museum, the special includes footage from the archives of the museum. *

Watch a Preview

(Check local listings for the time, or stream it from PBS.ORG the next day)

Sung in Latin with English captions
Here is the text in English

I know what you are probably thinking: you don’t like large-scale musical works, or Latin, or Catholics, or the Met. But you should really give this gem of western civilization a chance!

And @GJDS , I’m sure the Eastern Orthodox churches also have a rich tradition of liturgies/music to commemorate the dead.


Yes;e.g. Common Prayers - For the Departed - Orthodox Church in America (


I like what the then Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams said. Say nothing.

Arch Bishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams on 9/11

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If only they would have said nothing :slight_smile:
Williams said God is useless in such moments and Welby asked “where is God” after the bataclan shooting, so they both have a problem with God. Wonder what they thought where God was or what use he was when Jesus died on the cross

Not there, most probably on BBC Radio 4. I liked him after that.

Like Jesus did you mean?

Either b.s. or out of context.

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Yeah, pretty much. :slightly_smiling_face:

I was in seventh grade when 9/11 happened. At school. I was in-between classes. When I arrived in my literature class, the teacher had the news on and was silent. I didn’t understand the full weight of what had happened, but we just sat there, staring at the TV, for several minutes. He eventually turned it off to start class. Thinking back on it now, and all the lives lost, it has a much greater impact on me now than it did then.

My wife and my children are healthy and happy. But the thought that keeps going through my head is that someone else somewhere else is saying, “It was twenty years ago today when my [so and so] died because of what happened that day. I’ll never forget it.”


I guess I shouldn’t be surprised at some of the nastier comments on this thread. There was a guy here long ago who (on his own website) decided that Manhattan and the World Trade Center were symbols of wealth and pride and that 9/11 was God’s judgement, that God had withdrawn his protection from NYC. How obscene! My Connecticut town lost several people that day.

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I think we all meet moments when we would think God should protect us yet we found ourselves abandoned (at least from our perspective). There are no good answers when we experience that. I often turn to Ecclesiastes

11 Again I saw that under the sun the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, nor bread to the wise, nor riches to the intelligent, nor favor to those with knowledge, but time and chance happen to them all. 12 For man does not know his time. Like fish that are taken in an evil net, and like birds that are caught in a snare, so the children of man are snared at an evil time, when it suddenly falls upon them. (Ecc 9)

There is also the mournful Psalm 88 and Lamentations. God’s rain falls on the evil and the good. A walk of faith does not mean we are blessed on this earth. Such are the myths of the prosperity gospel that have infected everything in US culture, even in secular self-help books. Just try this snake oil and you’ll be cured of your ills. Just follow this 10 point plan and you will have that job you always wanted. Our faith has to be more mature than this to survive the vicissitudes of life.

Indeed, I pray for those who have suffered and have to ask often what might have been. I pray for our soldiers who have sacrificed part of their youth in the service of our nation to address the scourge we endured, especially now as they see us leaving in a not-so-glorious or mutual way we might have envisioned as the final outcome. Perhaps we have forgotten that at the foundation of everything, we should be mindful that God is the one who we should depend on; not our institutions, not our chariots, not grandeur. They are all useless and impotent if God is not somehow at the heart of what we really worship.

by Grace we proceed

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I was in Japan at the time – actually still am. I remember that I was taking a break and saw what looked like the Twin Towers with fires burning out of both. However, the family always had the TV on watching kids programs, so I thought it was some Godzilla movie or something of the sort. But I kept looking at it because it really looked like the Twin Towers, yet still thinking that this was just some sort of fiction flick, so I was kept waiting to see it shift scenes. It must have taken a few minutes to realize that this was for real.

It was shocking. I didn’t immediately conclude that it was an attack, but I thought it was strange that both buildings were on fire.

That is what I remember on that fateful day.

Here is the Sept 11 remembrance at my church, etched on a stone pillar: (can’t get it in one picture)



If only they would have made the link to challenge their listeners to ponder over the question in the context of Jesus and how he dealt with it to show God was with him. Jesus quoting the psalm explaining why he was on the cross was a cool statement.
If they did not believe that God was with those who died in that moment of death they lack belief, so they should have chosen their words wiser.

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It just does mean that we are, as it means we are not broken. This is why the children are blessed as they walk in faith. Quite opposite to Atheist perception, we are all born full of faith. It takes the influence of others to break that faith, usually in puberty, to turn us selfish, so blessed are those who can go through puberty and maintain their faith with the help of those who love them.

O love your quote from Ecc9, particularly in the context of understanding evolution. The bit that is missing and I don’t know Ecc well enough is the bit that the Queen saw that is, as stated in the post from @beaglelady, that I saw that grief is to those who love. But perhaps it’s in there together with seeing that those who share are being shared with.

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OK, maybe that is too dire in my expression “A walk of faith does not mean we are blessed on this earth.” I was thinking about the cheap sort of things like the prosperity gospel proclaims. The notion that you give money to some clown and you will be blessed is basically just flimflamming with the facade of religion. … and giving God a bad name. The thing is, I’ve started to realize that subtle forms of this notion have even infected mainstream Christianity and even a lot of secular society.

Often when we experience a bitter trial, we think that there is some way to fix it. To those who endure some bitter misfortune, we want to hear some cheap resolution that this was somehow for the person’s good. I’ve made so many mistakes like saying "at least it wasn’t … " or "maybe God is teaching you … ". It is really hard to see good people fall on misfortune. It’s really hard when we cannot deny that the wicked do (at least appear to) prosper, and even prosper handsomely at the expense of the righteous.

I’ve come to learn that maybe the only thing I can really do to show that I care is sit and listen. That can be really hard. Anyway, I cannot expect I will offer any quick answers, and that tendency is something I see that I have to untrain in myself, even with my own misfortunes.

I think you are right that “we are not broken”, though we can get pretty close. I have seen that. It doesn’t mean that I am where I think I should be, that the “after” is better than the “before”, but I have seen over the course of time that somehow, God has preserved me in God’s own miraculous way, despite the circumstances that sometimes nearly broke me.

Ecclesiastes is kind of pessimistic. The tone “life is vanity” that fills its pages is actually the Hebrew word “hevel”, which means smoke. It is something that is kind of there, but you cannot grasp your hands around it. It’s sober, which I like, and its main remedy is “to find a way to enjoy one’s lot”, which I largely agree with. However, on the love remedy, maybe a better advice is Romans 12:15

Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.

Anyway, thank you for the comment.

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