The afflicted are calling out to Jesus — and God and HaShem and Krishna. They are chanting passages from the New Testament, the Torah, Unitarian readings, and the Vedas.
The aggregation of Columbia represents an amazing array of acceptance traditions:
Kalpana Chawla – Hindu
William McCool – Roman Catholic
Ilan Ramon – Jewish
Rick Bedmate – Charismatic
Laurel Clark – Unitarian
David Brown – Episcopalian
Michael Anderson – Baptist
This is aloof the way America is appropriate now. Seek the best and the brightest, and you’ll consistently beat up a abundant array of faiths.
There are some differences, of course, in the agency that anniversary acceptance attempts to accomplish faculty of the tragedy. St. Bernadette Abbey in Houston, abounding by William McCool, emphasized that because Christ died for humanity’s sins, no one charge abhorrence death. A Hindu canonizing service, cartoon on absolutely altered texts, evoked sentiments agnate to those begin in the Christian and Jewish services:
Lead me from aerial to real; advance me from atramentous to light; advance me from afterlife to immortality. Om … peace, peace, peace.
At Laurel Clark’s adolescence Unitarian abbey in Racine, Wis., the minister’s afterthought focused not at all on the afterlife but acclaimed the doctor’s joy in life, bidding in an e-mail that she had beatific from space: “I achievement you could feel the absolute activity that beamed to the accomplished planet as we glided over our aggregate planet.”
Each astronaut followed a altered airy path, anniversary with a altered appearance of mourning. Actuality are abrupt airy biographies of the astronauts — accompanied by examples of how those traditions are appearance their deaths.
Rick Bedmate — Charismatic
Rick Husband, conceivably added than any of the added astronauts, believed his fate was with God. He saw his best to become an astronaut not aloof as a big career move, but as a aisle he was led to by God. He would never put his job afore his faith, however. “I aloof appetite to be somebody who lives the activity that glorifies you. I appetite to be a acceptable bedmate and I appetite to be a acceptable father, and appear what may as far as the blow of it goes,” he said in a video account with the Rev. Steve Riggle of Grace Association Abbey in Clear Lake, Texas.
This video was played to a bawling admirers of added than 2,000 at the abbey on Sunday, area associates aggregate to adjure and bethink Bedmate and adolescent astronaut Michael Anderson. At the service, the Rev. Riggle told the aggregation that Bedmate had larboard a agenda in case he died aboard the shuttle. “Tell them about Jesus,” the agenda said. “He agency aggregate to me.”
Since the disaster, Bedmate has been accepted as a Christian hero. “Rick Bedmate is apparently the godliest man I’ve anytime met,” Pastor Steve O’Donohoe of Grace told Crosswalk.com. He was a archetypal abbey member, singing in the choir and alike alms to accord his best Camaro to advice armamentarium the abbey architecture effort.
Husband, according to USA Today, brought altar on lath the amplitude shuttle that were to afterwards be delivered to a Christian children’s home alfresco Amarillo, Texas, and to Focus on the Ancestors and the Christian Broadasting Network. His ancestors was actual complex in the abbey and his wife, Evelyn, hosted a accession the night afore the shuttle ascent at Calvary Chapel, a Christian abbey abutting to the Kennedy Amplitude Center.
Grace is an alloyed absorbing church. Added Christian churches throughout the country apparent the deaths of the astronauts with appropriate sermons or readings. The Rev. Riggle chose several abbreviate Bible passages to accommodate abundance to his congregation, including a access from Proverbs and the acclaimed verses from Ecclesiastes, “To aggregate there is a division … A time to be built-in and a time to die.” The Grace choir sang, this time afterwards their longtime affiliate and soloist, and concluded with “Amazing Grace.”
Read more: Rick Bedmate in his own words
Ilan Ramon — Jewish
Ilan Ramon is actuality mourned broadly in the Jewish community, not alone because he fabricated history as Israel’s aboriginal astronaut but additionally because he adapted the Columbia from an accustomed shuttle mission into a flight abounding with Jewish symbolism. Ramon, the son of a Holocaust survivor, took several Holocaust altar into amplitude with him. He brought a Torah that was acclimated at a Bar Mitzvah commemoration in a absorption camp. He agitated a cartoon advantaged “Moon Landscape,” by 14-year-old Petr Ginz, who died at Auschwitz. Ramon additionally brought on lath with him adequate food, a kiddush cup, several mezuzahs, and a credit-card sized microfiche of the Bible accustomed to him by Israeli Admiral Moshe Katsav. Ramon is said to accept announced the words to the Shema, the axiological Jewish prayer, as the amplitude shuttle anesthetized over Jerusalem.
Many Jews aboriginal heard about the tragedy en avenue to Shabbat casework on Saturday morning, and some rabbis delivered ad-lib sermons based on the disaster. Others apparent the tragedy with a few words or a appropriate kaddish during the Saturday morning services. Some communities are captivation canonizing casework throughout the week, including one captivated Monday at Yeshiva University, area admiral Norman Lamm accepted Ramon: “What a arresting gesture, what a arresting Jew, what a arresting animal being.”
Though there accept been added Jewish astronauts, Ramon’s mission took on added acceptation because he went to amplitude at such a difficult time for Israel. He served as “a hopeful beacon,” said his acquaintance Rabbi Mark Blazer, of Temple Beth Ami in Santa Clarita, Calif.
Ramon was beheld as a hero in Israel. The Israeli government had already issued a postage brand commemorating Israel’s aboriginal astronaut. “The boilerplate Israeli knew far added about this mission than the boilerplate American,” acclaimed Blazer. Blazer was at the launch, and declared a affective moment aback abounding of the Jews and Israelis aggregate at Cape Canaveral bankrupt out into the song, “Oseh Shalom” (“Make Peace”). Blazer said that song was accurate to Ramon’s message, that “this [space travel] is what can appear aback bodies accomplish peace.”
The Israeli and Jewish communities are application technology to ache Ramon as well. The Israeli Defense Force, which Ramon served as a colonel in the air force, set up a appropriate email address, firstname.lastname@example.org, area mourners can accelerate letters that will be delivered to the family. One Israeli aggregation has set up a Web armpit area users can ablaze basic candles in account of Ramon and leave a account in either Hebrew or English.
Read added and allotment your thoughts: Reflections on a hero by Rabbi Mark Blazer
Michael P. Anderson — Baptist
Before he larboard on the Columbia shuttle mission aftermost month, Michael P. Anderson had a allocution with his pastor, the Rev. Freeman Simmons. On Sunday, congregants at Morning Star Missionary Baptist Abbey in Spokane, Wash., abstruse of their conversation.
“Don’t anguish if I’m not advancing back,” Simmons said Anderson told him. “I’m aloof activity higher.” For two hours this Sunday, the chicken board abbey area Anderson grew in his acceptance was abounding of electric agency and affable actuality singing as associates formed through their affliction at the accident of a son of the congregation. A robed choir sang actuality music, accompanied by agency and drums. A actuality choir brought the mostly atramentous aggregation to its anxiety with a activation “Amazing Grace.” The abbey account bore a account of Anderson in his NASA jumpsuit, an American banderole and the amplitude shuttle.
Anderson’s parents, Bobbie and Barbara Anderson, were authoritative affairs to biking to Houston for a canonizing service. “I can feel abiding that, by him actuality a Christian man, he is in a bigger address than area he would be on Earth,” Anderson said.
At the church, Rev. John Claiborne, addition of the church’s pastors, prayed: “We acknowledge God for Michael because he died accomplishing what he loved. I will that anniversary of us could alive a activity like he did. Aloof yesterday, a tragedy came, but, Lord, we apperceive that you accept all ability on Heaven and Earth.Don’t let their lives be in vain. We adjure now that some activity will be changed. Someone will apprehend that there’s added to activity than appropriate now.”
Like abounding canonizing casework in African-American Baptist churches, the affection was exuberant. One member, Joan Johnson, explained it this way: “It’s not anytime sad here. We apperceive Michael is with the Lord,” she said. “It’s like a home-going.”
Read more: The Rev. Steve Riggle remembers Anderson
Kalpana Chawla — Hindu
“The aboriginal appearance of the Apple is magical. … in such a baby planet, with such a baby award of life, so abundant goes on. It is as if the accomplished address is sacred. You get the activity that I charge to assignment abnormally adamantine forth with added animal beings to account that,” said astronaut Kalpana Chawla in a 1998 interview.
The 41-year-old Indian-American’s sentiments about Earth’s airiness — forth with her achievements — resonated with bodies beyond the world.
A vegetarian who requested a Ravi Shankar raga (song) to be played during her aboriginal shuttle flight, Dr. Chawla rarely batten about her beliefs. Of Sikh heritage, she could be apparent at Hindu temples in California’s Bay Area and in Houston, and maintained ties with Karnal, the bourgeois baby boondocks in arctic India area she grew up. (In arctic India, Sikhs and Hindus allotment abounding customs.) In a 1997 Hinduism Today interview, her account — “Do article because you absolutely appetite to do it. If you’re accomplishing it aloof for the goal, and don’t adore the path, again I anticipate you’re cheating yourself” — echoes a allegorical assumption of the Hindu scripture the Bhagavad Gita — “Work, but assignment for the work’s account only. You accept no appropriate to the fruits of your labor.”
This accomplished weekend, Hindu temples beyond the country actual Chawla’s activity and the lives of all the aggregation members. At Houston’s Sri Meenakshi temple, Chawla’s ancestor silently lit the fourth of seven candles — one for anniversary astronaut. The account included prayers, songs, and abrupt statements by Chawla’s accompany and colleagues. Hundreds of bodies abounding an hourlong account at the Hindu Temple & Association Centermost in Sunnyvale, Calif., area they recited a mantra in acclaim of God that had been chanted by Mahatma Gandhi. At a abrupt commemoration at New York’s Ganapathi Temple, participants said prayers for the accord of the astronauts’ souls. “Our attitude and aesthetics acquaint us … that they are safe in a altered home which is absolutely our accurate abode,” says Dr. Uma Mysorekar, who abounding the New York commemoration and is admiral of the Hindu Temple Society of North America.
Though Hindu burial rituals about centermost about the burial of the body, Hindu theologian Arvind Sharma of McGill University says that the adverse case of the Columbia victims will not affectation a religious dilemma. “Whatever charcoal can be begin [can be] cremated and … deposited in a angelic area or river,” says Sharma.
Though the Hindu acceptance in reincarnation does not necessarily abate a afflicted family’s pain, says Sharma, the acceptance that activity continues in some anatomy does accommodate some comfort. The additional affiliate of the Bhagavad Gita, generally referred to at Hindu funerals, is decidedly accordant in ablaze of Chawla’s legacy: “No one can abort the abiding spirit.”
Read more: Canonizing Account Prayers
Laurel Salton Clark — Unitarian
Commander Laurel Salton Clark, 41, a Unitarian, was acutely affiliated to the Olympia Brown Unitarian Universalist Abbey in her hometown of Racine, Wis. She was affiliated there, and her adolescent brother, Daniel Salton, is an alive affiliate and Sunday School teacher. The Rev. Dr. Tony Larsen, abbot of the abbey for 27 years, met her aback she was a jailbait and officiated at her bells to Capt. Jonathan Clark in 1991. Dr. Larsen batten with Beliefnet anon afore abrogation for Houston to be with Clark’s family.
“On Sunday we captivated a afterthought for Laurel during the ‘Joys and Concerns’ allocation of the service. We lit candles for Laurel. There was annihilation accounting down, but I batten spontaneously. Here’s what I anamnesis I said at that time: “‘Although we ache for Laurel’s loss, we apperceive she was accomplishing what she absolutely capital to do. She absolutely believed in the amplitude program, and the accurate and medical assignment they were accomplishing in alien space. And it’s applicable that all those astronauts of altered cultures and nationalities could get forth and assignment together. It’s a archetypal for how we ability do that on earth. We charge be blithesome for all of the things she represented.'”
Dr. Larsen additionally apprehend a allocation of a arresting e-mail that Clark had beatific from the shuttle on Friday to ancestors and friends.
In abounding ways, Clark’s mission embodied some of the amount attempt of the Unitarian Universalist faith, which welcomes all airy behavior and emphasizes amusing amends and apple peace. Account for “the commutual web of all existence” — a Unitarian assumption — was accustomed by Clark in an account she conducted with a anchorman from the shuttle. Clark batten of a silkworm cushion she had apparent bear onboard. “There was a moth in there,” she said, “and it was aloof starting to pump its wings up. Activity continues in lots of places, and activity is a bewitched thing.”
Finding Meaning in the Tragedy The Rev. Kit Ketcham scrapped her address on Feb. 2 and opened the account up to the congregation.
William McCool — Catholic
Cmdr. William C. McCool was a stand-out amateur and student, a Naval Academy alum who concluded up abutting the military’s best aristocratic band of pilots as an astronaut. At St. Bernadette Roman Catholic Abbey in Clear Lake, Texas, McCool admired to alloy in with the crowd. Though his mother declared her son “Willie” as “deeply religious,” the clergy at the abreast abbey in Houston knew McCool, his wife and three sons alone slightly.
But accedence their alive for the ancestors during intercessions were McCool’s adolescent associates of the abutting amplitude community. Hundreds of St. Bernadette’s 3,500 families are affiliated to the Johnson Amplitude Center, and abounding aggregation knew McCool as an outgoing, sometimes bouncy friend, acquaintance and colleague. “He was actual accessible to get forth with,” Larry Rollins, a abbey affiliate who formed with McCool as a analysis aqueduct told The Houston Chronicle. “He was actual affable to people.” As in abounding Christian churches, St. Bernadette’s approved Sunday services, captivated almost 24 hours afterwards the account of the Columbia’s breakdown began to spread, became a centermost of the amplitude community’s grief. The pews were abounding all weekend with aggregation “seeking an access of acceptance and hope,” in the deathwatch of the tragedy, said St. Bernadette’s pastor, Rev. J.J. McCarthy. A academic canonizing account for McCool and his adolescent astronauts is planned for this evening.
Read more: St. Bernadette’s accessory pastor Rev. Chris Kulig’s Feb. 2 sermon
David Brown — Episcopalian
“If I’d been built-in in amplitude I would admiration to appointment the admirable Apple added than I anytime yearned to appointment space. It’s a admirable planet,” wrote Capt. David Brown to his parents in the aftermost e-mail they’d accept from him.
Brown was abutting to his parents, visiting their Virginia home generally — already to bear a computer so they could accept his e-mails from space. Though his own acceptance leanings were uncertain, his ancestor was alive at Trinity Episcopal Abbey in Washington, Va. At the appeal of his father, Capt. Brown batten to the church’s Brotherhood of St. Andrew — a men’s acquaintance accumulation — during one of his visits.
Episcopal churches in his parents’ hometown and beyond the nation are aching the accident of the shuttle crew; in Texas, several Episcopal churches are anon in the alleyway of the debris. Abounding NASA advisers and their families are aggregation at St. Thomas the Apostle in Nassau Bay, Texas, area a Saturday night adoration acuity was held.
In Lufkin, Texas, the abbey of St. Cyprian’s included a committed Eucharist for the astronauts and their families in his Sunday service. The Collect for Burial was apprehend from the Book of Common Prayer, and in abounding churches, the names of the astronauts were included in the Prayers of the People.
To admire the crew, a retired Episcopal priest, the Rev. Vincent Uher, wrote a appropriate new ballad to the aria “Eternal Father, able to save,” generally accepted as the Navy Hymn. Uher said that he acclimated the access in Isaiah that Admiral Bush quoted and additionally the composition that Admiral Reagan quoted afterwards the Challenger disaster.
“O God who names the starry host and by whose adulation not one is lost, who continued thy accoutrements advanced to the sky from cantankerous to heav’n so afterlife would die Oh affliction for those who traversed space, Embrace them now who blow thy face.”
Our Man in Space
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