Family; I hope it’s not too late. I want to take this opportunity to reach out to our men and women in service, serving or who have served, and thank them for their courage and their commitment to the liberty of our country.
The reason I’m praying it’s not too late is, I read this opinion article in Fox News by William R. Forstchen about our being a country divided. He spoke about how the tradition of Memorial Day started, after the Civil War, and down through the First and Second World Wars, how it got bigger and bigger. It was not held on the last weekend in May, as the excuse for a three day weekend of fun and games. It was on May 30, each year, no matter when that day fell. It was a day of processions by American Legion groups and Boy Scouts to local cemeteries to honor the fallen who had served our country so proudly, without considering their own safety.
Then, in 1971, Congress decided it needed 3 day weekends for it’s employees, and of course, members of Congress. And so they delegated the honorable tradition of Memorial Day to part of a three day weekend, just an excuse to go to the beach, barbecue, and/or shop. I was furious. I was even more furious when I learned that our President and his family decided to spend Memorial Day in Chicago, rather than at Arlington National Cemetery, where we honor all our fallen men and women by honoring the tomb of the unknown soldier. I thought that was just terrible.
Until, as a proud American, I decided to participate in an event honoring our military here in our community, or in our county at least. I could not find any. Well, at least I know that there will be a service at the Arlington National Cemetery;. But I couldn’t find it being covered on any of the networks, not even c-span. Boy, was I depressed.
Then, finally, I checked with EWTN, Eternal Word Television Network, to find that the Archbishop of the Military, Archbishop Broglio, was celebrating a High Mass at the National Basilica in Washington, D.C. It was magnificent. I ran over to the Mission to share it with our family here, and then asked if we could lower our flag to half mast. At least, we’re doing something!
But I am so sad at how correct the author of the opinion piece was that we have become a country divided. Patriotism seems to be a thing of the past. We wrote a chapter in one of our books, “Beyond Sodom and Gomorrah”, called My Country Tears of Thee. That was done ten years ago. Dear Lord, how appropriate it is for today. Please, family, do something for our brothers and sisters in the military today. See if you can find someone to say thank you to. If you have a military cemetery, or a cemetery where any of our fallen men and women are buried, put a flower and an American flag on the tomb. Say a prayer. And make a commitment that you will not let another Memorial day go by again without honoring our troops.
My last word on the subject, is, “I’m so sorry I forgot about you. Please forgive me.”