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2000s


9/11

As the Evangel heads into the 21st century, it continues to examine key world events from a biblically grounded perspective. Perhaps no other event will shape the early years of this century more dramatically than the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. This selection introduced the extensive coverage the Evangel gave that infamous day in its October 28, 2001, issue.

1910s: The early role of the Pentecostal Evangel

1920s: Revival Reports

1930s: A World of news

1940s: World War II: Last-minute deliverance from execution

1950s: Revivaltime premiers on ABC

1960s: Missionary Tucker martyred in the Congo

1970s: Touching lives through Teen Challenge

1980s: Straight Talk

1990s: The Columbine High School shootings

2000s: 9/11

September 11 begins as any other Tuesday for Stanley Praimnath, an assistant vice president of loan operations at Fuji Bank Limited in New York City. As is customary, he arrives at his desk on the 81st floor of the World Trade Center south tower by 8:30 a.m., before co-workers arrive. Here he spends time reading his Bible and praying.

“For some reason, I gave the Lord a little extra of myself that morning during prayer,” says the 44-year-old Praimnath, who is also a deacon and Sunday school superintendent at Bethel Assembly of God in Queens, N.Y. “Over and over I said, ‘Lord, cover me and all my loved ones with Your precious blood.’”

Fifteen minutes later, he is retrieving phone messages when a red-orange flash catches his eye. Outside his window, flames cough black smoke as a result of American Airlines Flight 11 plunging into the WTC north tower next door. Praimnath puts down the phone.

Watching fireballs fall to the ground, Praimnath tries unsuccessfully to call his boss in the north tower.

“Go, go, go,” he says to Delise, a temporary worker, the only other person around. “Let’s get out of here.”

They rush to the 78th-floor sky lobby to catch an express elevator down and are joined by three top Fuji executives. At ground level they are met by a security guard. “Don’t leave the building,” the guard says. “A plane accidentally hit the north tower; you’ll be safer inside because of falling debris.”

Praimnath and the executives return to the elevator, but Praimnath, sensing uneasiness in his soul, sends Delise home. The three other men head off to their departments. Praimnath will never see them again.

As Praimnath enters his office, his phone is ringing. A friend from Chicago asks Praimnath if he heard about the north tower being hit. He assures her all is fine.

But all is not fine. It is 9:03 a.m. and United Airlines Flight 175 is staring him in the face.

—John W. Kennedy, John Cockroft and Peter K. Johnson

Stanley Praimnath miraculously survived the impact of Flight 175 just yards from where he stood. He continues to testify in churches across the nation about God’s protecting hand on his life.

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