Hundreds of people packed St. Patrick's Cathedral Sunday evening and even more stood outside for the first in a series of memorial services for the victims of the World Trade Center attacks.
The service was led by Edward Cardinal Egan, who saluted the spirit of New Yorkers in the aftermath of the attack.
"We have seen New York at its best," Egan said of the thousands of volunteers who have helped in the search for survivors, and the countless others supporting them.
Egan said they have turned the disaster area, known to some as "Ground Zero" into what he called "Ground Hero."
The cardinal also praised Mayor Rudolph Giuliani and Governor George Pataki for their leadership in the attack's aftermath. The two men, who sat near each other at the front of the cathedral, embraced as those in attendence gave them a standing ovation.
The cardinal said that healing will take time, but that New Yorkers will be strong.
"The extraordinary goodness of our people has marched alongside the pain and the hurt," Egan said.
The service was one of several memorial services that took place throughout the city Sunday, with more scheduled for the coming days. A second service at St. Patrick's is scheduled for Monday.