the Events of 9/11:
The September 13th
Interview of Anne Graham Lotz by Jane Clayson on CBS' Early Show...
Thursday, Sept. 13, 2001 - 12:00
NEW YORK -- Anne
Graham Lotz is the second daughter of Billy Graham. She has stepped in
her father's footsteps and formed a ministry that is based in Raleigh,
N.C. She calls herself a Bible teacher. She is not an ordained minister.
Her father has called her "the best preacher in the
family." She spoke with the Early Show's Jane Clayson on Sept. 13,
2001 to offer some comfort to the families of the terror victims.
We've turned to your father, the reverend
Billy Graham, so often in times of national crisis. What are his
thoughts about what happened on Tuesday?
Anne Graham Lotz:
I turned to him also. In fact, I called him last night
after you all called to arrange for this. He's reacting like a lot of
Christians around the country, we're all praying. I think about those
people you just showed. I wasn't sure I'd be in control when you came on
because it just provoked such emotion to see these people carrying
pictures of their loved ones and knowing they don't know if they're
alive or dead.
And at a time like that, I know the families and the friends of the
can hardly even pray for themselves. They don't know what to say or how
to pray. I want to say to them - families and friends of the victims,
that there are thousands of people in this country who are carrying you
in prayer right now.
And we're praying for you with hearts filled
with compassion and grief and just interceding on your behalf, asking
the God of all peace and the God of all comfort to come down in a
special way into your life and meet your needs at this time. My father
and mother are also praying like that.
The pain is incomprehensible for so many of
these people. At a time like this it is so easy to lose faith. How do
you keep faith, Mrs. Lotz at a time like this?
Anne Graham Lotz:
I think it is almost easier to have faith because we have nothing else
in some ways. I've watched as this nation has turned to prayer. We've
seen prayer vigils. And in our city, we have prayer vigils. And so I
think it is a time to turn to God.... Our nation has been hit and
devastated by this day of terror and now I believe it is our choice as a
nation as to whether we're going to implode and just disintegrate
emotionally and spiritually or whether we'll make the choice to be
stronger. I think right now, we have the opportunity to come through
this spiritually stronger than we've been in the past because we turn to
I've heard people say, those who are
religious, those who are not, if God is good, how could God less this
happen? To that, you say?
Anne Graham Lotz:
I say God is also angry when he sees something like this. I would
say also for several years now Americans in a sense have shaken their
fist at God and said, God, we want you out of our schools, our
government, our business, we want you out of our marketplace. And God,
who is a gentleman, has just quietly backed out of our national and
political life, our public life. Removing his hand of blessing and
protection. We need to turn to God first of all and say, God, we're
sorry we have treated you this way and we invite you now to come into
our national life. We put our trust in you. We have our trust in God on
our coins, we need to practice it.
So many people have called this an act of war. Has he
expressed anything about what a proper response for an attack like this
Anne Graham Lotz:
No. I've tried to be very careful. I don't ever answer for my father.
But I believe in the next few days you're going to be seeing him and
hearing from him and perhaps he will express some of those things.
Jane Clayson: As a spiritual adviser, how would you
define the feelings
Anne Graham Lotz:
I was watching television the first day and interviewed a construction
worker that who had been an eyewitness through all of this in a building
next to the World Trade Center. He said, I've seen planes hit this
building, people falling out of the sky. He said, my heart is in my
throat. I feel like I would say the same thing. You almost don't have
thoughts to articulate. Your heart is in your throat. You can hardly
stand it. You're numb.
For myself, I fall back on my faith in God and the foundation, speaking
of those buildings, as an illustration of America, our foundation is our
faith in God and the structure we build on that foundation is what
enables us to endure something like this.
...I believe God also knows what it is like to lose a loved one, gave
only son on a cross. He knows what it is like to see a loved one die a
horrific death. He's emotionally involved in our pain and he has the
answers to us and he can bring comfort beyond human understanding.
Jane Clayson: There's
such a feeling of helplessness among so many. They don't know what to do
beyond giving blood, beyond writing a check to help those in need. What
would be your recommendation as a spiritual adviser?
Anne Graham Lotz:
I thought Governor Keating said it right when you asked him. He said
pray. I believe we need to pray. As Christians, we need to
pray for people who can't pray for themselves right now. I believe we
need to call out to God and ask him to forgive our sins and heal our
land. God is greater than sometimes we think of him and he can
solve this, give us answer, give us wisdom, lead us through this in a
way that makes us stronger as a nation but we have to turn to him.
This event has changed us forever. I
know you believe that. Going forward, as a nation, what do you say
Anne Graham Lotz:
Well, I pray that God will use this event to change us forever in a
positive way. And that will strengthen our faith in him. I
thought of all those people who have died in this tragedy. It
doesn't matter right now what political affiliation they had or what
denomination they belong to or what religion or what the color of their
skin was or their stock portfolio.
What matters is their relationship with God. I would like to see
Americans begin to focus on some of the primary things and some of the
things that are more important than just, you know, entertainment and
pleasure and making more money.
In light of recent events...terrorists attack, school shootings, etc.
Let's see, I think it started when Madeline Murray O'Hare (she was
murdered, her body was found recently) complained she didn't want any
prayer in our schools, and we said OK.
Then, someone said you better not read the Bible in school... the
Bible that says "thou shalt not kill, thou shalt not
steal", and "love your neighbor as yourself." And we
Then, Dr. Benjamin Spock said we shouldn't spank our children when
they misbehave because their little personalities would be warped and we
might damage their self-esteem. And we said, an expert should know what he's talking about so we said
Then, someone said teachers and principals better not discipline our
children when they misbehave. And the school administrators said
faculty member in this school better touch a student when they
misbehave because we don't want any bad publicity, and we surely don't
want to be sued (there's big difference between disciplining and
touching, beating, smacking, humiliating, kicking, etc.) And we said,
Then someone said, let's let our daughters have abortions if they
want, and they won't even have to tell their parents. And we said,
Then some wise school board member said, since boys will be boys and
they're going to do it anyway, let's give our sons all the condoms
they want, so they can have all the "safe sex" that they
desire, and we won't have to tell their parents they got them at school.
And we said, OK.
Then some of our top elected officials said it doesn't matter what we
do in private as long as we do our jobs. And agreeing with them,
said it doesn't matter to me what anyone, including the President, does
in private as long as I have a job and the economy is good.
And then someone said let's print magazines with pictures of nude
women and call it wholesome, down-to-earth appreciation for the beauty
of the female body. And we said, OK.
And then someone else took that appreciation a step further and
published pictures of nude children and then stepped further still by
making them available on the internet. And we said OK, they're
entitled to their free speech.
And then the entertainment industry said, let's make TV shows and
movies that promote profanity, violence, and illicit sex. And
record music that encourages rape, drugs, murder, suicide, and satanic
themes. And we said it's just entertainment, it has no adverse effect,
and nobody takes it seriously anyway, so go right ahead.
Now we're asking ourselves why our children have no conscience, why
they don't know right from wrong, and why it doesn't bother them to kill
strangers, their classmates, and themselves.
Probably, if we think about it long and hard enough, we can figure it out.
I think it has a great deal to do with "WE REAP WHAT WE SOW."
not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall
he also reap." -Galatians
"Dear God, Why
didn't you save the little girl killed in her
classroom? " Sincerely, Concerned Student...Could the reply be:
Concerned Student, I am not allowed in schools." Sincerely,
Funny how simple it is for people to trash
God and then wonder why
the world's going to Hell (literally). Funny how we believe what
the newspapers say, but question what God says in the Bible.
Funny how everyone wants to go to heaven, provided they do not have to
believe, think, say, or do anything the Bible says.
Funny how someone can say "I believe in God" but still follow
who, by the way, also "believes" in God.
Funny how we are quick to judge, but not to be judged.
Funny how you can send a thousand 'jokes' through e-mail and they
spread like wildfire, but when you start sending messages regarding the
Lord, people think twice about sharing.
Funny how the lewd, crude, vulgar and obscene pass freely through
cyberspace, but the public discussion of God is suppressed in the
school and workplace.
Funny how someone can be so fired up for Christ on Sunday, but be an
invisible Christian the rest of the week.
Funny how I can be
more worried about what other people think
of me than what God thinks of
We invite you to print out this page
(and any other of our pages, especially our page:
Plan of Salvation)
and pass it on to someone else.
& Layout: Copyright © 2001
S.G.P. All rights reserved.
Photo of Skellig Michael Copyright © Irish Tourist Board.