The Niagara University community gathered on the morning of Sept. 11, 2019, for a remembrance ceremony organized by the university’s veteran services office. The Purple Eagle Battalion color guard began the service by raising the flag, followed by a prayer by the Rev. Aidan Rooney, C.M., vice president for mission integration, and a dedication from Robert Healy, director of the veteran services office.
“On the anniversary of Sept. 11, 2001, we once again call on your spirit that is within us to help us deepen our response to our commitment to peacebuilding and to the avoidance of war. We are so aware of the fear and violence that continues to permeate our worlds since 9/11," said Father Rooney. "As we pray in remembrance of those who died that tragic day, and those who died as a result of their heroic action, help us also to be people of hope who embrace a belief that a new vision of freedom is possible.
“Empower us to shape a world marked by ways of life that lead to justice and peace. Teach us to truly honor our dead. Fashion in us a people who are more ready to grow in understanding than eager to judge those who are different from us. Form us, a people determined to heal wounds, rather than inflict them. We ask all of this in the name of Jesus, who came among us to show us the way. Amen.”
The prayers used in the memorial gathering were adapted from a service shared for public use by the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas, from an original prayer written by Rev. Eileen Lindner, for the National Council of Churches.