More than a week’s worth of peace initiatives in Tompkins County — including several with key involvement from Catholic faith communities — will mark the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the United States. The public is welcome to attend these gatherings, which sound a message for peace while also taking time to recall and reflect.
Among the events being hosted or cohosted by Catholic entities:
Sunday, Sept. 11 — At 3 p.m., an interfaith service will take place at Ithaca College, highlighted by rededication of the "Peace Pole" on the island of the Muller Chapel pond. Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, Buddhist and Muslim communities will join in.
Monday, Sept. 12 — At 7:30 p.m., Holy Cross Church, 375 George Road, Dryden/Freeville, will host "Peacemaking/Peacekeeping in Hearts, Homes, Communities and the World." The conversation will be led by Father Carsten P. Martensen, SJ, director of campus ministry at Ithaca College.
Tuesday, Sept. 13 — At 7 p.m., Father Drew Christiansen, SJ, editor-in-chief of the national Jesuit weekly magazine America, will speak on "War and Peace: Fresh Thinking for New Times." His presentation will be followed by a question-and-answer session and dialogue. It will take place in the Roy J. Park School of Communications auditorium at Ithaca College.
Thursday, Sept. 15 — At 7 p.m., Father G. Simon Harak, SJ, director of the Marquette University Center for Peacemaking, will present "Clarification of Thought — The Six Wars" with discussion to follow. It’s set for the First Baptist Church, 309 N. Cayuga St., Ithaca.
Friday, Sept. 16 — At 7:30 p.m., a Mass for Peace will be held in the Emerson Suites at Ithaca College Campus Center with Father Harak presiding and preaching. The Mass for Peace is an annual event organized by all Tompkins County Catholic faith communities to acknowledge the International Day of Peace.
Saturday, Sept. 17 — From 3 to 10 p.m., St. Catherine of Siena Church, 302 St. Catherine’s Circle, Ithaca, will host the first of a two-day International Festival for Peace. Highlights will include live music and performances; arts-and-craft vendors; international food; and children’s activities. The festival will begin with an outdoor Mass led by Father Joseph Marcoux, pastor. Also, from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., a retreat led by Father Harak will take place in the basement meeting room of Immaculate Conception Church, 113 N. Geneva St., Ithaca.
Sunday, Sept. 18 — At 1 p.m. and 9 p.m., Bishop Matthew H. Clark will preside and preach at Masses at Muller Chapel, Ithaca College.
Also, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., St. Catherine of Siena Church will conclude its International Festival for Peace with Father Marcoux leading Mass to start the day.
Monday, Sept. 19 — At 7 p.m. (doors open at 6:30), an evening of song, praise and worship will take place as St. Catherine of Siena Church featuring popular national Catholic contemporary recording artists Audrey Assad and Ike Ndolo, as well as Catholic evangelist Ennie Hickman. For ticket information, call 607-273-6121.
Wednesday, Sept. 21 — On the International Day of Peace, all are invited to observe a day of fasting and prayer. In addition, college students and staff will read peace-themed stories to students at Immaculate Conception School in Ithaca.
For details on any of these events, contact Laurie Konwinski, justice-and-peace coordinator for Catholic Charities of Tompkins/Tioga, at 607-272-5062, ext. 12, or LKonwinski@dor.org.