Monday, May 30, 2011

Monday's Prayer and a Memorial Day Tribute

As I drove to Seneca Lake yesterday, I pondered my weekly
"Monday's Prayer" post and the fact that I would not be
starting school as it was a holiday.

My thoughts then veered to a Memorial Day prayer,
but knew none were in my Stormie Omartian books
(she may have some, just not in the books I possess.)
The Internet next came to mind as a source for such a prayer.

 But what photos would I use?  I've featured those of my dad
 at the WWII Memorial several times and did not want
 to use them again.

 Just then I passed the Quaker Cemetery high on a hill
overlooking Quaker City, Ohio.  As I tend to zip along
on those roads, I had to turn around in the tiny town
and drive back up to the entrance to the cemetery.
I drove to where my in-laws' graves were and parked my car.

Looking around, I knew I'd found the perfect Memorial Day photos.

As for the Internet search, the options are countless, but I chose the following
prayer.  I've also included a third grader's essay and a poem from a member
of our armed services.   I hope they 'speak' to you.

SUNDAY, MAY 30, 2010

Prayer for Memorial Day

By Donald Sensing

Lord God, grant us the faith that will truly honor those we remember this day.
They died for their country; give us the faith to live for our country.
They died to bring peace; give us the faith to live for peace.
They died believing in us, their fellow Americans; give us the faith to believe in one another and in our future.

Grant us the same sense of commitment to people and their right to justice and peace as those we remember.
Teach us to honor all our relationships, from those dearest to us to those whom we will never meet but with whom we share this common planet.

Grant us wisdom, give us hope, grant us dreams and visions like those that inspired people to give their lives, believing that through adversity and conflict would come peace and justice.

Lord, save us from complacency and prejudice – those very things that create conflict and cause young lives to be lost in battle or in despair. Make us instruments of your peace:

where there is hatred, let us sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is discord, unity;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, love;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy.

Lord, hear our prayer, and let our cry come unto you. Amen.

Adapted from the prayer for the Anzac Day Dawn Service, Sydney, Australia, 1987.



 Memorial Day

© 2001 Ali M., 3rd Grader, Academy Elementary School, Madison, Connecticut.
As the flowers rest on the decorated graves and the sunlight shines on the beautiful sailboats, Uncle Sam whispers in my ear about how we should care for the soldiers and remember the ones that have died. Swimming pools open, BBQs fry. Today is the day to think of what they have done for us. There are blurs of red, white and blue marching down the street and flags are lowered at half-mast. But we should always remember and never forget what set us free, from this very day on.

This is the grave of my husband's parents.
They are buried in a quaint Quaker cemetery
 overlooking southeastern Ohio's rolling hills and luscious fields.
Robert Francis 'Bud' Orr served in WWII,
so I thought this was a fitting photo
with which to introduce the following poem.

We buried another veteran today
© Major Van E. Harl, USAF Ret.
Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi, 28 November 2001

We buried another Veteran today.
He went to his God, from us, he went away.
This one was young, in the prime of his life.
He left twin children and a very courageous wife.
It wasn't a bullet, a plane crash or a bomb.
It was cancer, and he just finally, could not hold on.
He fought "it" like a military campaign.
But the time came to surrender, to end his earthly pain.
He knew he would be fine in the presence of his Lord.
But what about his twins, those children he adored?
Will they grow strong and at "life" win.
Please God, let them always remember him.

We buried another Veteran today.
It seems, all my life, it has happened this way.
From my uncles of the WW II-time frame.
To the military friends, Vietnam would claim.

For me the number of dead, is always on the rise.
When I get a call another veteran is gone, it is never really a surprise.
From lost sub-mariners, in early days of my life.
To the forever gone, military-medical friends of my veteran wife.
I lost a Korean War veteran friend this year, to a crashed airplane.
I lost a Gulf War friend to cancer, a difference in their age, but still that pain.
I lost an Uncle to cancer who did Korea with the Navy, steaming off shores.
I lost my father-in-law who fought in Korea, from a "fox-hole" in the frozen outdoors.

We buried another Veteran today.
It seems in all my family's generations, it happens this way.
From my Revolutionary War Grandfathers who started this sad, but needed trend.
To the family members on both sides in 1861, who just would not bend.
Some of my family lived a long and happy life, after "their" war.
They died of old age in their bed, safe-behind a locked door.
They died in battle, buried where they fell.
They died years later, carrying emotional scars, in their own personal hell.

My family is no different than thousands who met our Nation's call.
They rose to the demands of this country and some gave their "all".
We have to continue doing this, to make America free.
But, it's that Veteran's twin-little children that keeps worrying me.

We buried another Veteran today.
It seems all my life it continues this way.
Now my only child is nine and we reside on a military installation.
My wife and I truly want her to live safe, in a free nation.
But what happens, when it is her-generation's turn to make a stand.
Do we lose our only child in some forsaken-foreign land?
Does she play it safe, stay home and say "that's boy's stuff".
Or does she join like her mother and go right into the ruff.

She has to be that one Veteran I don't see, make that final "call".
Let me go before her, let me first give this country my fighting "all".
Maybe if I go "out-there" and make my final stand.
She can stay safe-at-home, in this wonderful free land.

We buried another Veteran today.

Web site: © 1997-2009 SUVCW & David Merchant
Poem: © ©2001Roger J. Robicheau, The Poetic Plumber
Updated 22 May 2002

Blessings to you as you go about your lives on this special day.
.May we remember and help our present armed service members
in some way.


  1. The most amazing tribute I have read. The photos are perfect. The third grade writing touched my heart. We have so much to be thankful for as a country -- so many gave their lives so we can be free. I'm thanking God today.


  2. Gorgeous post. Thanks so much. Both the poem and tribute are fabulous. We don't ever need to stop thanking those service men and women who did (and are doing) so much for OUR FREEDOM. God Bless them ALL.

    Happy Memorial Day, Beth.

  3. This is a wonderful tribute to those who sacrificed everything for our freedom Beth. Great job!
    School is over here, so I had imagined you were finished too! I'm sure it won't be long now. Blessings on your week.

  4. Very nicely done, Beth ... that little 3rd grader did a great job.

  5. It's a good thing to have a day to remember.

  6. Wonderful post, Beth.
    I went to bed in tears last night (Sunday night) after watching Public Television's piece on the slaughter at Outpost Harry in Korea 1953...such a horrendous waste of humanity.
    Becky (google takes my comment to frustrating)

  7. God bless our military and the families of those who have lost a loved one in the (too many) various wars. Although we do not carry gun or sword, we carry God's word, a pen, a computer,or a phone, may we bring peace to our world in our own way! Amen

  8. I just got your comment. Somehow it got lost and needed to be approved. *sigh* We're doing reasonably well, I just had a flare-up and lost my words for a bit. I think they're coming back now. :)

    I appreciated this post as several of my family members served in the U.S Armed Forces. My grandma was in the WAVES during WWII.

    Oh, and my email is alittlebitograce at hotmail dot com.


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