Memorial Day

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11 Responses

  1. em... again says:

    Thank you

  2. em... again says:

    My ‘thank you’ was to Michael for posting this remembrance… after reading the link, i realized that it might be construed that i was thanking those who died or even those who wear the uniform… the link is worth the read

    i pray that this nation will give up on sacrificing our young men in police actions around the world …
    furthermore, nation building should be laid to rest as a failed experiment at best …

  3. Dan from Georgia says:

    I give remembrance to my uncle Ronald L who was killed in the Chosin Resevoir battle in the Korean War.

  4. JD says:

    Memorial Day, Veterans Day, Independence Day. Remembering the fallen, all armed service members, the struggle that birthed our nation. Just do not revert to Mars worship as some seem to do, which is as old as the Roman god of war. For some the military is their god.

  5. Dan from Georgia says:

    Remembering a fallen soldier doesn’t have to mean you support war or wars. I remember my uncle because it’s the right thing to do. My dad lost a brother in his prime. War sucks. It’s very violent and bloody. Saving Private Ryan was the tip of the iceberg. It’s not glamorous despite how many years ago Hollywood tried to romanticize WWII.

  6. Dan from Georgia says:

    My last comment was not directed to anyone here btw. God bless y’all!

  7. Anchored says:

    “To save your world, you asked this man to die. Would this man, could he see you now, ask why?” WH Auden
    May we all use the freedoms our soldiers have fought for wisely.

  8. Rick says:

    Em…again–I am not sure I understand your comments regarding wanting to be understood that you are thanking Michael, not those who died or veterans who served.

    I had the privilege of serving in the military in the years just after the Viet Nam war ended; I am not a combat veteran but have family members who are/were. When I entered the military, I was actually a pacifist, so I entered as a military corpsman and then cross-trained into a cardiopulmonary technologist specialty. I met a fair number of combat veterans (some multi-war) who were still dealing with issues from their wounds in combat. I will always be in awe of their humor and grace–none ever gave me the impression that they enjoyed war or killing.

    I have always found it interesting that in Scripture, at least the NT, Jesus does not say a negative word about soldiers. Neither does John the Baptist. I would encourage those who look at the military to remember their humanity–Jesus and John the Baptist certainly did. I never think of the military in the context of the politics or politicians that order their deployment. I think America has at best, a feckless political class, at worst, a corrupt and evil, hypocritical political class. I have never observed honor and courage in the civilian world as I have in those I served with. I gave up my strict pacifist philosophy while in the military; in one of those moments when I realized that I would not just be willing to die for my military friends but I would be willing to kill to protect them. I never had a conception of dying for or killing for my country–much too abstract, especially with my views regarding the lack of morality and honor of our political class.

    I think it is instructive that neither Jesus or John the Baptist identified individual Roman soldiers with the evil of Rome’s political system. I do know that both Jesus and John the Baptist had strong, confrontational words for the political class of the Pharissees and the like. It is easy for me, probably easier than most, to honor the courage and understand the humanity of those who serve in the Armed Forces–I would ask that others at least consider their humanity and their personal, as well as familial sacrifice.

    It is also my hope that someday, sooner rather than later, the the church recognizes that it’s OK that we not bring politics into everything. That we can respect and honor those who do not share our political bent simply because they carry the image of God, regardless of their bent. My hope is that we, the Church Catholic, will distance ourselves from the idolatrous belief that salvation and deliverance can be achieved within the context of a political system, whether right or left.

    I remember daily Luke Benjamin Hollar, and his family–Luke was killed in Anbar Province, Iraq, while serving with the U.S. Marines; and many others.

  9. em... again says:

    Rick, amen to every word of your #8

    my thank you @1 was perfunctory – it was a thank you to Michael for what he’d posted – then i read the article that he’d linked to admonishing us not to thank the living service men on Memorial Day as it commemorates those who gave up their lives to protect ours and the living members of the military were embarrassed to receive thanks for their service on this day…

    for the record
    my late husband, who died in 2008, is buried with honors in a military cemetery – Korean war (the one that, it seems, has never ended) – my son served a term in the Marines, many of his boot camp buddies, beautiful young men, were in those barracks in Lebanon (victims of politicians, including Regan) – i like to think that our servicemen/women, taken as a whole, are there to resist evil; being a warrior with that goal deserves respect
    just wearing a uniform doesn’t make you noble, but most serve nobly, i think
    i would hope that any Christian living today who might have dishonored any of our men in the service who served bravely doing the dirty work of the politicians in the Vietnam war… has by now asked God’s forgiveness (my late husband, a patriot, said that if that war was still going when our son reached draft age, our son would be in Canada, but knowing my son, i don’t think he would have fled the country leaving someone else to take his place)

  10. Rick says:

    Em, thank you–I knew I had probably misunderstood the context. I understand your husband’s thoughts regarding your son. Interestingly, your comment regarding not all who wear a uniform are noble–yes, I understand that–I remember, by choice, I think those who did, not those who did not.

    Thank you for remembering those young men from the Marine barracks–painful though that is, I think it reflects one of the most loving aspects of God’s character, that He remembers us; we are engraved on the palms of His hands. As I have passed 60 years of age, I am finding it less important how I am remembered except by Him, if that makes any sense. I have a duty to remember others, perhaps the best definition of prayer.

    There is a wonderful line from a Houseman poem: “Life to be sure, is nothing much to lose; but young men think it is, and we were young”. Again, thank you for the grace you have demonstrated in your response to me…

  11. The New Victor says:

    My “conventional” view of the Vietnam War changed after talking to so many Vietnamese ex-pats in my 25 years in the tech industry, at 3 different companies. One of my co-workers said that the images that they used to broadcast of citizens in their streets with fists raised, shouting “Down With America!” were propoganda. If you didn’t march, you were forced to at gunpoint, or taken to a prison camp for re-education. He said that he, like most, participated, yelled, but his feet shuffled tiredly, and in their hearts, most wanted to come to America and freedom. After being in prison camps twice, he was finally able to escape by boat, like others.

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