After the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, a national service of prayer and remembrance was conducted at Washington’s National Cathedral. America’s most powerful leaders prayed together, listened to brief sermons and then joined voiced to sing the defiant anthem, “Battle Hymn of the Republic.” Its words seemed to perfectly signal America’s intention to battle the forces of terror in the world.
It was written by Julia Ward Howe, a leader in women’s rights and ardent foe of slavery. Julia, who came from a wealthy New York family, was married to a prominent Boston philanthropist and humanitarian. They were both crusaders for progressive moral issues of the day. In 1861, during the darkest days of the Civil War, Julia toured a nearby Union Army Camp on the Potomac. That very night the words came to her in her hotel room.
These defiant words seem just as perfectly suited to today’s terror as they were to Julia during the Civil War and to leaders in 2001: https://youtu.be/QSiVjlknuSw