Take a Walk: Marking 9/11

My old friend Bart Campolo is now the outreach director at Abraham Path a simple, ground-breaking project that seeks to build peace through pilgrimage. Each year Abraham Path brings together people from around the world to walk the path of Abraham/Ibrahim in order to create friendships between people of differing faiths and cultures.

Bart is now using the skills he’s developed as an activist in Christian urban ministry to help organize walks across the United States to commemorate the ten year anniversary of 9/11.  The purpose of the walks are described as follows:

Honor the countless victims of 9/11 and its aftermath with a simple act of hope and courage: Walk and talk kindly with neighbors and strangers, in celebration of our common humanity and in defiance of fear, misunderstanding and hatred.Wouldn’t it be great if 9/11 became a day to reach over boundaries to connect with ‘the other’, the way Martin Luther King Day has become a day for community service?  It only takes a few people from one group or congregation to join a few from another to create a meaningful 9/11 Walk. 

After ten years of fear, war, and religious divisiveness, isn’t it time Christians began committing themselves to the work of healing and reconciliation?  Maybe this is one way to start. Read this endorsement by David Woolley, executive director of the 911 Project:

This September 11th will be the 10-year anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. That tragic event launched the United States into a new era of wars in Islamic lands abroad, and fear, hatred, and oppression of Muslims here in America. The tenth anniversary will no doubt be the occasion for heavy media attention and an intense flurry of memorials, speeches, editorials, and demonstrations. The effect could be one of fanning the flames of prejudice and distrust. Or, it could be a day of honest dialog, mutual forgiveness, and reconciliation.

What kind of day would YOU like it to be?

Although the primary walk will be held in New York City, Abraham Path has set up a website listing walks across the United States. You can find a walk near you as well as details on organizing your own walk at www.911walks.org.

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