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Terror turns to prayer

September 15, 2001

Amber Willard

NORTHEAST GLENDALE -- Small votive candles silently flickered in a

corner of St. Mark's Episcopal Church Friday afternoon, where dozens of

people -- parishioners and nonparishioners -- came to reflect on the

national day of prayer and remembrance.

Betsy Howard, who has lived in the city for two years, covered her

face with trembling hands as she sat alone on one of the red-padded pews.

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"I'm from the New York area. That was my home they destroyed," she

said shakily outside the church as cars passed on busy North Brand

Boulevard.

Back inside the church, more than a page of names were added to its

guest book as others came to pray.

Friday was designated as a day for national prayer following terrorist

attacks Tuesday in which four hijacked commercial planes were

deliberately crashed on the East Coast.

Thousands of miles away, in Glendale, people like Lawrence Browning

flocked to churches, places they have not been in years.

"I drove around town looking for a church with its doors open. I

needed some time for quiet reflection," said Browning, whose Glendale

employer encouraged its workers to find places to pray on their lunch

breaks.

He found St. Mark's, where Parisa Mohempour had stopped on her way

home.

"I came to pray for the people who lost their lives. I keep thinking

about the families who lost loved ones," said Mohempour, who had a loop

of braided red, white and blue ribbons pinned to her shirt. At a coffee

shop that morning, a woman was handing out the decorations. She refused

to take any money for them, Mohempour said.

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