Thursday, September 10, 2009

Bells Peal Peace Near Site of 911 Ground Zero

By Lauren Yarger
Eight years ago on this date, I didn’t know if it would ever be possible to feel peaceful, or in fact, to feel anything again, after the terrorist attacks that leveled the World Trade Center. Personally, it was the beginning of a long walk through an emotional and spiritual desert in which the Lord was my only oasis (read how God walked with me through the dry years in an article published by ByDesign Ministries by clicking here.)

Last week, I had the opportunity to visit Ground Zero, now the site of bustling construction as redevelopment and a memorial are going up. Just around the corner stands historic Trinity Episcopal Church, (you may know it from the movie “National Treasure”) a lovely building with beautiful stained glass windows that stood when the towers came down. It also boasts a new donation of 12 change bells (read the story here) . Last Saturday, members of The North American Guild of Change Ringers had gathered at the church for its annual meeting and at noon, the baffles in the tower were opened. A burst of unfettered joy resounded all through the area.

Sitting on a bench in the adjacent cemetery which holds the resting places of those dead for centuries, with many tombstones so worn with time that they are illegible, I felt a peace I never would have imagined possible in 2001. That day, the world changed. We united, recovered and moved on, but we’ll never again be able to live a day without knowing that everything can change in the blink of an eye.

Except for God, that is, and this thought is what brought such peace last Saturday. The bells pealed and seemed to tone “He is here; yes, he is here!” and the tragic events of September 2001, for the first time, seemed a long time ago.

A burst of applause greeted the first touch. It was like a little slice of heaven, where all that is good and all that is right joins together in harmonious song to shout with joy to the Almighty.

The bells will ring again in a special memorial Friday, Sept. 11, 2009 from 8 to 8:45 am.

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Lauren Yarger, Bio

Lauren Yarger has written, directed and produced numerous shows and special events for both secular and Christian audiences. She co-wrote a Christian musical version of “A Christmas Carol” which played to sold-out audiences of over 3,000 in Vermont and was awarded the 2000 Vermont Bessie (theater and film awards) for “People’s Choice for Theatre.” She also has written two other dinner theaters, sketches for church services and devotions for Christian artists.

Yarger trained for three years in the Broadway League’s Producer Development Program, completed the Commercial Theater Institute's Producing Three-Day Training and produced a one-woman musical about Mary Magdalene that toured nationally and closed with an off-Broadway run.

In 2008 she was a Fellow at the National Critics Institute at the O'Neill Theater Center in Waterford, CT. She writes reviews of Broadway and off-Broadway theater with a Christian perspective for Reflections in the Light ( and is editor of The Connecticut Arts Connection. She also is a contributing editor for

She also reviews books for Publisher's Weekly and is a member of the National Book Critics Circle. She formerly was Connecticut theater editor for CurtainUp, a national theater web site bsed in New York and a reviewer for American Theater Web.

She also served as Executive Director of Masterwork Productions, Inc. and worked in arts management for the Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts in Hartford and the Hartford Symphony Orchestra.

She is a freelance writer and member of the Drama Desk, The Outer Critics Circle, The American Theater Critics Association, The League of Professional Theatre Women and The CT Critics Circle.

A former newspaper editor and graduate of the University of Missouri’s School of Journalism, Yarger lives with her husband in West Granby, CT and has two adult children.

Copyright Notice

All contents copyright © Lauren Yarger 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013. All rights reserved. For reprint permission, contact

Scripture from THE MESSAGE Copyright 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002. Used by permission of NavPress Publishing Group.

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.

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