My Bishop.

"There was, as many have noted, a remarkable surge of faith following the tragedy. People across the United States rediscovered the need for God and turned to Him for solace and understanding. Comfortable times were shattered. We felt the great unsteadiness of life and reached for the great steadiness of our Father in Heaven. And, as ever, we found it. Americans of all faiths came together in a remarkable way." 

-Thomas S. Monson-

Today is the tenth anniversary of 9/11/01. I can't believe it has been ten years since that tragedy occurred. I am so grateful every day for this wonderful country I live in and the men and women who fight to preserve our freedom. I also loved {this article} in the Washington Post by Thomas S. Monson, the President of our Church. The entire week, I have read stories of the survivors of 9/11 and I am thankful for those who survived to tell these amazing stories. It is sobering and humbling to hear these stories. My heart goes out to those who lost family and friends in all of the events on 9/11 and I know that we will be able to see our loved ones again. I know that God is aware of our country and He knows what is best for us, even though it is hard to know that at times. This experience will forever be engrained in my mind and in my heart. God bless America.

Two weeks ago, my Bishopric was able to speak in church and my Bishop related an experience I will never forget. Bishop Cottle was the last speaker and he said that he wasn't going to talk about what he had prepared, but that he wanted to share with us an experience that happened almost ten years ago that he did not like to share with people. As I sat in the audience, I wondered what in the world he was going to tell us. He begins by saying, "I flew into New York City on September 10, 2001 for a meeting at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001." Right then, it became completely silent in our chapel.

He relayed to us the amazing story of how his life was preserved that day. He talked about how he was staying at the hotel by the WTC. He brought his luggage with him as he walked over to his meeting about a half hour early. He witnessed the first plane crash as he looked in the mirrored windows of a building across the street. Everyone thought it was an explosion and ash and fire started falling all over the place. He dove almost twenty feet to miss a sixty foot beam headed straight towards him. He was in the crowd clamoring to get into the other tower and when they wouldn't let them out, they all walked outside and saw the plane head straight towards the second tower. He ran through literal fire and brimstone to safety. He saw a man's head get split open by debris and he watched men burn right in front of him. He saw a woman and child getting trampled and stopped to help them. He saw so much tragedy that day. He watched people jump out of the WTC as it was burning and crumbling to the ground. He saw a man jump out of the window using a fire hose and slowly, the fire hose was severed by the fire and the man became consumed. He related this story to us by saying that he has seen too much tragedy in his life that he never wants to see anyone hanging on by a spiritual rope. He doesn't want to see people become consumed by spiritual death. He doesn't want to see any spiritual tragedies in our ward. It was one of the most powerful talks I have ever heard and I know without a doubt that his life was preserved so that he could serve as the Bishop of our ward. I have had that confirmed to me so many times and I know that the Bishop loves us immensely.

I know that Bishops are called of God to serve and love their wards. Today, my dad was sustained and set apart as the Bishop of my home ward and I am humbled that he was sustained by our ward and I'm humbled that he will have this opportunity to serve and love. I couldn't stop crying today--I think I'm dehydrated at this point. The Spirit has been so strong today. I have felt the presence of those who lost their lives on 9/11, I have listened to my old bishopric, my Stake president and my parents speak in church and testify of our Savior, and I received a tender blessing from Bishop Cottle after meeting with him about Relief Society this afternoon. I'm grateful his life was preserved so that I can learn from him and be counseled by him. A Bishop's love is immense and all encompassing for all members of the ward. I know this to be so true. I am grateful for the opportunity my dad has to now serve my home ward. My dad is incredible and one of my best friends. Even though Bishop Cottle is the Bishop of my YSA ward, my dad will now be my Bishop as well and I'm grateful for the roles they each play in my life.

1 comment:

  1. this is really beautiful. i am grateful for the survivors who've told their stories and given us all new perspectives of gratitude and the fragility of life.


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