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October 1, 2014 | 7th Tishrei 5775

A Liturgy for 9-11

© Alden Solovy
Originally posted on To Bend Light.


For 9-11 Survivors

G-d of the survivor,
G-d of the mourner and the witness,
Grant solace and peace to those still held by physical, emotional and spiritual distress from the attacks of 9-11. Release them from visions of death and destruction, from guilt or shame, from fear or anger. Bind their wounds with Your steadfast love. Lift them on Your wings of kindness and grace.

Blessed are those who have found peace.
Blessed are those without tranquility.

Blessed are those who speak.
Blessed are those who stay silent.

Blessed are those who have healed.
Blessed are those who suffer.

Blessed are those who forgive.
Blessed are those who cannot forgive.

Blessed are You, Adonai our G-d, Source of strength for survivors of violence and tragedy in every land and in every age. Blessed are You, Rock of Israel, Source of hope and comfort.



To the Terrorist

You who would hold the sky captive,
The sea prisoner,
The land in chains…

You who hide in caves,
Retreat to the wilderness,
Disappear behind false names and forged papers…

You who smuggle guns and arms,
Hide rockets in cities and bombs in homes,
Build weapons against the innocent and the bystander…

You whose designs are destruction,
Whose plans are fear,
Whose joy is hate…

You who harden your hearts
And wrap yourselves in death…

What evil has robbed you of your love,
Your compassion,
Your goodness,
Your humanity?
What lies have invaded your minds
So that you choose to die in order to kill?

We who love our lives and liberty
Stand firm and strong against terror.
We will defend our nation and our people.
We will protect our land and our homes.
And we pray for you to find hope and comfort
In lives of peace.



At the Hand of Terror: A 9-11 Yizkor Prayer

Creator of all,
Source and shelter,
Grant a perfect rest under your tabernacle of peace
To ______________________ (name in Hebrew or your native tongue),
My [father / mother / sister / brother / child / wife / dear one/ friend]
Who died [in / during / because of]
The 9-11 attacks on the United States.
Remember the works of his/her hands
And the message of his/her heart
Remember all those who were lost in the terror of that day.
Grant their families peace and comfort for Your name’s sake
And for the sake of those who perished.
Bring an end to violence and terror,
Speedily, in our days.
May the memory of _____________________ be sanctified with joy and love.
May his/her soul be bound up in the bond of life,
A living blessing in our midst.



At the Hand of Terror II: A 9-11 Memorial Prayer

Creator of all,
Source and shelter,
Grant a perfect rest under your tabernacle of peace
To those who died in the 9/11 attacks on the United States.
Remember the works of their hands
And the message of their hearts.
Grant their families peace and comfort for Your name’s sake
And for the sake of those who perished.
Bring an end to violence and terror,
Speedily, in our days.
May their memories be sanctified with joy and love.
May their souls be bound up in the bond of life,
A living blessing in our midst.



Memorial Prayer for 9-11 First Responders

G-d of the selfless,
G-d of the strong and the brave,
Grant a perfect rest among the souls of the righteous
To those who died in service to others because of
The 9/11 attacks on the Unites States.
May their dedication to protecting life serve as a shining lamp of love
And the works of their hands bring us all merit in heaven.
Bless the souls of all who have died to save others,
Civilians and professionals,
The trained and the untrained,
In every age and in every land,
Men and women who answered the call of honor, duty and service.
May their memories be sanctified with joy and love.
May their souls be bound up in the bond of life,
A living blessing in our midst.



Yizkor for First Responders

G-d of the selfless,
G-d of the strong and the brave,
Grant a perfect rest among the souls of the righteous
To ______________________ (name in Hebrew or your native tongue),
My [father / mother / sister / brother / child / wife / dear one/ friend]
Who died in service to others [in / during / because of]
_________________________________________________ [name of event such as:
[the 9/11 attacks on the Unites States, the Mount Carmel forest fire, etc.].
May his/her dedication to protecting life serve as a shining lamp of love
And the works of his/her hands bring us all merit in heaven.
Bless the souls of all who have died to save others,
Civilians and professionals,
The trained and the untrained,
In every age and in every land,
Men and women who answered the call of honor, duty and service.
May the memory of _____________________ be sanctified with joy and love.
May his/her soul be bound up in the bond of life,
A living blessing in our midst.



Other prayers that may be useful in developing a 9-11 commemoration are:
  • “Against Tyranny” – A prayer against oppressive regimes
  • “At the Hand of Violence: A Yizkor Prayer” – For those who died by violence 
  • “For Bereaved Children” – A prayer of mourning and hope for children who’ve lost parents
  • “For the Bereaved” – A prayer of mourning for all “After Shiva” – When the shiva is over, what next?

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