September 2013 - Manhattan New York
St. Paul's Chapel, is an Episcopal chapel located on Broadway, between Fulton and Vesey Streets, in Lower Manhattan. It is the oldest surviving church building in Manhattan.
Below the east window is the monument to Brigadier General Richard Montgomery, who died at the Battle of Quebec (1775) during the American Revolutionary War.
George Washington, along with members of the United States Congress, worshipped at St. Paul's Chapel on his Inauguration Day, on April 30, 1789. Washington also attended services at St. Paul's during the two years New York City was the country's capital.
The rear of St. Paul's Chapel faces Church Street, opposite the east side of the World Trade Center site. After the attack on September 11, 2001, which led to the collapse of the twin towers of the World Trade Center, St. Paul's Chapel served as a place of rest and refuge for recovery workers at the WTC site.
For eight months, hundreds of volunteers worked 12 hour shifts around the clock, serving meals, making beds, counseling and praying with fire fighters, construction workers, police and others. Massage therapists, chiropractors, podiatrists and musicians also tended to their needs.
The Chapel is now a popular tourist destination since it still keeps many of the memorial banners around the sanctuary and has an extensive audio video history of the event. There are a number of exhibits in the Chapel. The first one when entering is "Healing Hearts and Minds", which consists of a policeman's uniform covered with police and firefighter patches sent from all over the country, including Iowa, West Virginia, California, etc. The most visible is the "Thread Project", which consists of several banners, each of a different color, and woven from different locations from around the globe, hung from the upper level over the pews.
London presented the bell to City of New York one year after 9/11. The Bell of Hope stands in the churchyard of St. Paul’s Chapel as an enduring memorial, rung on occasions when the parish pays tribute to victims of terrorism. Following the tradition of the FDNY’s salute to fallen comrades, the chapel’s clergy tolls the bell in four sets of five rings. The bell has been rung following the London, Madrid, and Mumbai bombings, and for the Virginia Tech shooting victims, and on 9/11 anniversaries. It recently tolled for the Colorado theater victims.
A footprint of the World Trade Center is underneath the bell.