Father John Manning presided at a brief, but solemn prayer service after the noon Mass on Sept. 11 at the Public Servants Memorial Flag Pole on the south side (Superior Avenue) of the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist.
As is the custom every Sept. 11, a prayer service is conducted and a wreath is placed next to the flag pole, which was dedicated by Bishop emeritus Anthony Pilla on Sept. 11, 2003. The service remembers those who died in the terrorist attacks on the twin towers of the World Trade Center, at the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., and in the plane that crashed into a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Nearly 3,000 people lost their lives that day, including hundreds of firefighters, paramedics, New York City police officers, Port Authority police, military personnel, passengers and crew on the four hijacked planes and others who were in the buildings.
Father Manning noted that the events scarred many people, causing deep pain. He prayed for strength to help those who survived. He also prayed for peace and understanding and asked God to give us wisdom and to keep first responders and other public employees safe.
The plaque on the flag pole reads: “Public Servants Memorial Flag Pole in honor of the public servants and safety workers of the eight counties of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Cleveland. In memory of all federal, state, county, city and municipal workers who sacrificed their lives in selfless service to others, especially on Sept. 11, 2001.”