In prayers simple and direct, villagers mourned their neighbors and friends and the scores of strangers who died in the crash of Pan Am Flight 103.
"We have gathered here this afternoon to remember before God all those who have died in the Lockerbie Air Disaster: the 259 people aboard the Pan Am Clipper `Maid of the Seas' and the 11 people of Lockerbie . . .," said the Rev. James Anand.Relatives, airline workers, townspeople and dignitaries - including Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher - jammed the 91-year-old Dryfesdale Church on Wednesday for a memorial service for the victims of the crash.
The service came two weeks after a bomb blew up the Boeing 747 as it passed overhead en route to New York from London. Flaming debris pounded the town, killing 11 residents in addition to the plane's passengers and crew.
The service was very much Lockerbie's own: led by its three ministers - Presbyterian, Anglican and Roman Catholic - and embellished only by the music of the congregation singing familiar hymns.
Bunches of lilies mixed with white carnations were the only added decoration in the church.
Yet the presence of Thatcher and the cameras of the British Broadcasting Corp. testified that the 45-minute service was a national occasion as well. The altar was crowded by ecclesiastical dignitaries, including Roman Catholic and Anglican bishops, a commander of the Salvation Army and Britain's chief rabbi.
Searchers have recovered 242 of the dead but have not accounted for 28 others. As of Wednesday, 149 bodies had been identified.