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Even as it faced a range of peculiar challenges, the National Cathedral’s staff has held together to carry out an extraordinary mission. I have been truly amazed at how many moving pieces they have managed with grace, dedication, and humor. No one would ever welcome an earthquake, a hurricane, or a crane collapse, but I am thankful for the can-do spirit they have revealed.

No one could have predicted the earthquake that did so much damage to this beloved landmark and national treasure or the crane collapse that would alter so many plans for its most important events. But the Cathedral is fortunate and in fact blessed to have successfully drafted a comprehensive strategic plan for the next three years, well before these disasters struck, and to have a dedicated staff capable of carrying it out.

The National Cathedral is called to be the spiritual home for the nation. It seeks to be a catalyst for spiritual harmony in our nation, renewal in the churches, reconciliation among the faiths, and compassion in our world. This mission and vision have already guided us through A Call to Compassion—the enormously powerful tenth-anniversary commemorations for the 9/11 attacks—and they will continue to direct our steps. We will seek to offer a rich variety of worship, events, music, and discussion to the nation and the world as our restoration work goes on.

Our strategic planning process revealed the need to build the Cathedral’s endowment, in effect to lay deep foundations for new structures of financial support. The expenses related to one sudden quake alone show why this must continue to be a goal. At times of great hardship to others, the National Cathedral must have the strength to offer its ministry even more powerfully. That ministry begins with the building, but it continues with the life that building contains.

We know clearly what we must do to remain a healing and awe-inspiring presence in our world. We know our calling and the legacy entrusted by so many to this sacred place. Your prayers, participation, and offers of financial support made our work of planning possible. We will continue to rely on your active support as this generation answers its call to build.