Churches offer strength, support amid crisis


September 18, 2001|By Debra Taylor Young | Debra Taylor Young,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

PATRIOTIC AND reverent response has been tremendous in South Carroll after the tragic events of Sept. 11.

Since the attacks at the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, a continuous pattern of red, white and blue can be seen everywhere as the community displays flags and ribbons on homes, cars and businesses.

Billboards displaying patriotic and religious sentiments, such as "God Bless America," "Proud to Be an American" and "Pray" are prevalent throughout the community.

One sign, made of sheets, was placed on a vacant business at thRoutes 26 and 32. It reads, "America, Pray for Our Nation."

Area churches have responded by holding special services and opening their doors for prayer.

Church of the Nazarene on Liberty Road opened for prayer Sept. 11 - soon after the news of the destruction of the World Trade Center - and remained open for 48 hours, said the Rev. Joe Ward.

"We wanted to make the church available for people that may work shift-work, in spite of the threat of vandalism," he said.

Ward intends to keep the church open daily until the end of the month, when he will hold a revival service to pray for all U.S. families, the community, the nation and its leaders, he said.

Many churches, including St. Joseph's Roman Catholic Church on Liberty Road, held prayer services the night of Sept. 11. More than 300 people attended the service at St. Joseph's, and the church will remain open for prayer 24 hours a day, according to church receptionist Mary Arther.

The Rev. Eugene Alexander of Holy Spirit Lutheran Church in Eldersburg opened his church all day Sept. 11 and started a collection for a disaster relief fund.

Responding to President Bush's decision to name Friday a national day of prayer, area churches held noon services. These services also were well-attended.

Many Sunday services were dedicated to the victims of the terrorist attacks and their families, and to the hundreds of rescue workers involved.

Members of Wesley Freedom United Methodist Church in Eldersburg lighted candles to remember the victims, families, and rescue workers.

St. Joseph's Catholic Church had standing room only at its 10 a.m. Sunday service, led by the Rev. Joseph Marshall. Many worshippers stood in the church lobby.

"The terrorists underestimated how much America would pull together and unify," said Sherry Perrine, Christian education coordinator for Wesley Freedom.

She was not surprised by the show of community strength.

Museum honors volunteers

Sykesville Gate House Museum held a luncheon to honor its volunteers Saturday.

This is the third year for the volunteers luncheon, which was held at Old Mainline Visitors Center on Baldwin Drive, said curator Jim Purman, who spoke about the "Little Slice of History" that the museum represents.

He went around the room and thanked each volunteer.

Twenty people attended the event, which was organized by assistant curator Keri Greenwalt. Beck's restaurant on Main Street catered the event. Volunteers ranged in age from 11 to 93 years old.

Fall Perennial Swap

Piney Run Park will sponsor a Fall Perennial Swap at 2 p.m. Saturday at the nature center off Martz Road.

Anyone wishing to share extra perennials, shrubs or trees may take plants to exchange for others. All plants should be labeled. People without plants to exchange are welcome.

According to nature center staff, many hostas and lilies should be available for trade. Regular park fees apply.

Information: 410-795-6043.

Debra Taylor Young's Southeast neighborhood column appears each Tuesday in the Carroll County edition of The Sun.

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