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Special Event

Ceremony Commemorates Victims of Oklahoma City Bombing

Aired April 19, 2000 - 6:11 p.m. ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

JUDY WOODRUFF, CNN ANCHOR: Here in the United States, it has been a day of tears and remembering in Oklahoma City. Five years ago, on April 19th, a nearly 2,000 pound fertilizer bomb exploded outside the Murrah Federal Building. The massive blast killed 168 people; 19 of the victims were children.

Survivors, relatives of victims and rescuers are taking part at this hour in a ceremony dedicating a memorial. It is a field of stone and bronze chairs, one for each of those who was killed in the explosion.

(JOINED IN PROGRESS)

REV. NICHOLAS HARRIS, FIRST UNITED METHODIST CHURCH: "Strife exists and contentions arise. The law is ignored and justice is never upheld, for the wicked surround the righteous. Therefore, justice comes out perverted.

"I would speak those words, oh, God, and you would respond to me with more words from Habbakuk, and this is how you answered my complaints.

"As you said to the prophet you have said to me, for I will work a work in your days which ye shall not believe though it be told to you."

And this completed memorial standing on this sacred sod is an unbelievable thing. In fact, our Father, who would have believed what we have already seen on this site? The gallantry of rescue teams from around this nation; the compassion of a grieving world; the matchless generosity of the people of this city, state and nation, and especially the leadership of our city. It's all been unbelievable, oh, God. You have indeed worked a work in our day.

Now I beseech You to once again rise from your rest. Let us see You do another mighty work in our day. I ask you for that which Habbakuk asked: Renew Your work in our day and in our time make them known. Use this memorial we dedicate today to witness to the triumph of good over evil, righteousness over wickedness, joy over sorrow, and love over hate.

As the children of Oklahoma City sang this morning, make it to be an instrument of Your peace. Finally, our Father, help us to never forget those who stepped from this place into the life of the world to come, cause their memories to live with us until that day when we meet again, and we ask for these things in the name and authority of Jesus the Christ, who lives and reins forever, world without end, Amen.

SHAW: As Oklahoma City is pausing to remember those killed in that bombing, the two men sentenced for carrying out the attack are fighting their convictions. Terry Nichols is in an Oklahoma City jail awaiting a state trial that could result in the death penalty. Already he has been sentenced to life in prison by a federal court.

Timothy McVeigh is the one who actually detonated the bomb. His final appeal of his death sentence is pending. His execution could happen as early as next year.

TO ORDER A VIDEO OF THIS TRANSCRIPT, PLEASE CALL 800-CNN-NEWS OR USE OUR SECURE ONLINE ORDER FORM LOCATED AT www.fdch.com

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