Reflection on 9/11

SMS Army of Angels

“In the weeks after 9/11, out of the pain and the fear there also arose grace and gratitude, eruptions of intense kindness that occurred everywhere, a sharp resolve to just be better, bigger, to shed the nonsense, rise to the occasion.

- Nancy Gibbs


Dear SMS Families,


Today is day 11 since we reopened Saint Mary School for the 2020-2021 school year. Each day’s experience has helped us to adjust to our new normal. Whether your children are in the building or participating in the temporary at-home instruction; the staff and I continue to reassess, reflect, and re-adjust so as to provide an optimal school experience. We are grateful for your feedback, support, and prayers.


I am struck by the fact that our 11th day of school falls today, September 11th, the anniversary of a horrific attack on the United States.


After the 9/11 attack, our former fourth-grade teacher, Karen Fahey, and I organized a school-wide project to make paper angels to represent the 9/11 victims. Not only was this done to memorialize the victims and for their grieving families, but it allowed our students and staff to become a part of the healing process. We spent several weeks making our “Army of Angels” in honor of those lives lost that stormed the heavens that day. Our paper Angels hung in every hallway for months that year and unbeknown to us as we made the angels, we made the exact number of lives lost that day. While some may see this as a coincidence, we felt the presence of God.


The world seemed bleak in the weeks that followed 9/11. We leaned on our faith when we thought we would never feel at peace again. In the midst of the unease that we feel today as a result of the pandemic and other world events, let us remember that we have gotten through tough times before. Together with faith, love, and grace, we remain resilient.


Blessings and grace,