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August 29, 2002

Calvin Marks September 11

Calvin College will mark the one-year anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks on New York City and Washington, D.C. in a variety of ways.

At 4 p.m. on September 11, 2002 the school will join with Calvin Theological Seminary and the Christian Reformed Church in North America to host a special chapel service (to be called "A Service of Remembrance and Hope in Solidarity with a Suffering World.") The service, to be held in the Calvin Chapel, will address three areas: 1) remembrance of evil and brokenness; 2) solidarity with a suffering world; and 3) the hope of God over darkness.

Herm Keizer, a former military chaplain who now works for the CRC, will deliver a meditation based on Psalm 46, including reflections about what it was like to be at the Pentagon on September 11. Kezier was working in Washington at the time. On September 11 he walked from the State Department to the Pentagon after the attack. There he joined a group of volunteers who were helping out in any way possible, including working with the firefighters. The next day Keizer went to the Army Operation Center in the Pentagon to work as a Chaplain and visit the site where the building was hit. Those memories and more will be part of his stirring meditation.

The service will include a mass choir made up of participants from Calvin, Calvin Theological Seminary, the CRC and the community. They will rehearse that day at 3 p.m. Also, 15 minutes prior to the service there will be organ music, choral music, hymns and silence as a time of reflection and remembrance prior to the hour-long service.

Also participating in the service will be: Peter Borgdorff, executive director of ministries of the CRC; Paul Kortenhoven, former missionary to Sierra Leone; Seminary student Ellen Van Tongeren; Calvin chaplain Dale Cooper, Seminary president Neal Plantinga; Calvin Worship Institute director John Witvliet; and Calvin administrator Darlene Meyering.

Part of the service will include a remembrance of all of the countries impacted by the attacks of September 11. A list of those countries will be read during the service and as it is read anyone with a connection to those countries will be asked to stand. At the end of that reading all those remaining sitting will stand in a show of solidarity with those standing. And together all will read words of solidarity, strength and comfort.

Calvin also plans to have its Fine Arts Center auditorium open from 8 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. and its Chapel open all day on September 11 with a large-screen video in the FAC showing TV coverage of the one-year anniversary and the Chapel being reserved for personal prayer and reflection. The Seminary also will do the same with its auditorium and Chapel.

Also, the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship has, on its website, resources for remembrances of September 11, including sample services, songs, scripture passages and more.



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Contact Phil de Haan
616-957-6475 (v)
616-957-7069 (f)