Towers fell with a rush and they fell with a roar. The sky was blank where they'd been before. And more was lost than who can say. It was our hearts came down that day.—A.B. Curtis, “The Little Chapel That Stood”I have been following “Remembering 9/11,” the series on National Geographic. Watching. Thinking. Remembering. This is history. Truly "living" history in every sense of the word. Almost anyone over the age of 15 can tell you something about that morning of September 11, 2001. I remember it feeling like any other day. We woke up, ate breakfast and got the kids ready for school. My husband was an academic counselor at the high school our oldest son attended and I was a teacher where our three youngest were enrolled in school. It was a short drive from home. We didn't watch TV in the morning and on the drive to school the kids were doing their usual complaining about homework and fighting over who got to sit in what seat in the van. Turning on the car radio wasn't even an option. So it wasn't until we arrived at school that morning that we learned of the horror that would change our world. I remember facing a classroom full of Kindergartners. I remember their eyes wide open in terror, searching desperately for security and something they could believe in. I remember thanking God that I was teaching in a Catholic school where I could pray with my students. I remember wondering how in the world any teacher could possibly get through that day without mentioning God. Wondering how anyone could possibly get through that day without prayer. Because amidst all the chaos, the fear, the lives lost, and the thick, black layer of smoke, somewhere beneath it all, there had to be a way to find God. The morning after 9/11, I got into the car with our three youngest children to go to school. But on that morning, there was no fighting or whining over where each one sat. My little girl, Veronica, said, "I think on the way to school we should pray." And so we did. And from that day on, that is exactly what our family does every morning when we get into the car. When tragedy strikes, most of us immediately turn to God. We may not think about Him for years on end, but when something goes wrong He becomes the focus of our lives. Although we may not usually acknowledge His existence each day, when the chips are down we gain comfort from the fact that someone is in control. When our lives fall apart we want to know that someone has it all together, even if we don't understand what has happened. We may never thank God or even admit His existence in the good times, but when the bad times come along God becomes a little more real in our lives. In 2003, A.B. Curtis wrote a children's book about the tragedy of 9-11 entitled "The Little Chapel That Stood.” As a teacher and a mother of young children, I was skeptical of how one could capture the horror of that day in a story of rhyming verses and whimsical pictures. You can't. Instead, Ms. Curtis tells the story of St. Paul's church, a historical church that stands fewer than 100 yards from where the towers stood. The chapel remained unharmed and became a refuge and launching point for the rescuers who were on the scene. Since its publication, I have read “The Little Chapel” to my students each year on the anniversary of 9-11. And every time I read the book, tears well in my eyes. "The Little Chapel That Stood" is a gentle re-telling. Our children are surrounded every day by references to the horrors of that day that forever changed our world. They ask what "9/11" means and they surely deserve to be answered. But childhood is all too brief. Very soon, little ones will be old enough to learn the details of that day. For now, this book tells them a story of hope amidst the charred ruins. A story we all need to hear:It was something of wonder. A symbol of Grace. The steeple still there. Not a brick out of place. Rescuers worked through the night and the day. In the chapel they'd pause and go on their way. A cup of hot coffee and something to eat. Here the firemen, welders, policemen would meet.So often in life, we too, stand amidst ruins. We, too, face unthinkable horror. And we, too, look for something left standing among the ruins. Just ask Martha Olvera, mother of a 20-year-old fallen Marine, Lance Corporal Javier Olvera, who lost his life fighting in Afghanistan. Her heart breaks every day for the son she loves and the life he lost. Her refuge? Her faith. Just like the little Chapel of St. Paul, her faith has been the link in a chain that was able to withstand the unbearable pain of losing her son. Daniel, Javier's younger brother, has turned to his faith, too. A student in my confirmation class last year, Daniel has turned to God to make his older brother proud. As a newly confirmed Catholic, Daniel has joined the St. Mary Core Youth Team and attended the SAW leadership retreat. Despite the tragedy, the pain, and the devastating loss he has endured, he has turned to the one constant that remains standing through it all: his faith.We will never forget the horror and tragedy of that dark day ten years ago. But more importantly, may we never forget that beneath the charred ruins and the thick, black cloud of smoke, there was a little chapel that stood. The little chapel remains standing to this day. A reminder to us all that even if our whole world may seem to crumble and fall around us, our Faith in God is strong enough to remain standing.Each one of us is a link in that chain to do something grand or do something plain. First we take heart. Then we take aim. Our littlest good deed is never in vain. Working together is how we got through it. Little by little we learned how to do it. It's nice to be big and it's nice to be tall. But sometimes being little doesn't mean being small .... Just like the Chapel of Old St. Paul.Therese Corsaro attends St. Mary Church, Palmdale, and teaches at St. Mary School.{gallery width=100 height=100}gallery/2011/0909/corsaro/{/gallery}