Memorial Day – 2020 May 21

This year’s Memorial Day will be extra special as families once again get together after many months of staying home and distancing themselves from their families.  This might be the first time a grandma and grandpa see their new grandchild.  This may be the first time in months for a family to get together for a special meal. America and many other nations have faced a pandemic of the Coronavirus that has taken many more lives of those we love.  We need to make this Memorial Day special for all those who have lost their lives. We need to honor those who sacrificed their lives for the country they loved.

This May 25th will be the day of celebration for the Memorial Day or Decoration Day, as some call it.  Memorial Day is the day set apart to honor the dead of any American war.  The date is usually May 30th.  A memorial is serving to keep in memory a deceased person or an event. Families will be visiting graves of their loved ones to put a special flower on each grave to remember the ones they loved and lost.

 Memorial Day is a day to remember our men and women who died to keep freedom alive in the United States of America.  Memorial Day is a time of reflection on the sacrifices during the history of America when men and women fought for our country to remain free to worship as we choose, to live as equals, to speak out, to live and work where we choose, go to school for an education, to share our beliefs and to respect others who believe differently.  America is a place where we are free to excel to be the best we can be.  This Memorial Day, we need to pray that these values are not lost due to those who would wish for the power to take many of these values and beliefs away.  Sometimes I wonder how our War Veterans feel about the way America has changed in this new culture.  We have many men and women who served their country and died doing so.  We have many men and women who served their country and are now in special Veterans’ hospitals.  We have many families who are taking care of their children who have been badly wounded in a war or special event in their service to their country.  We have many veterans who are home but who have post war mental problems.  We need to pray for all those who served their country and have had to face their futures with the aftermath of war. These men and women served their country to keep us free.  Let us make sure they did not fight and die in vain.  Our country cannot let this happen.

 Many of our Pastors have spoken about the changing of our country.  I have listened to them speak about American history and how we have moved away from celebrating the reasons America was founded.  We were founded on the principle that every person is free.  We are all equal.  America was founded to be the light in the world for those who were oppressed and for those who came from other parts of the world to experience what America stood for.  America has been called the land of the free, the home of the brave and a land where God reigns.  When did that concept change?  Why is God no longer good enough to be in our schools, our state houses, our congress, our homes and the town square?  It seems as though we have been sleeping and have not been aware that bit by bit, our America is fast losing the focus of why we are so different and so special.  It is time we, the people, stand up and speak out for the America that we cherish before it is too late.

There have been many challenges that have made Americans come together.  How quick we forget.  Do you remember the attack on the World Trade Centers?  America was brutally attacked on our soil and thousands were killed.  For a time, Americans came together and worked, prayed and shared together.  Many of our men and women took time out of their lives to serve their country because they wanted to make our country safer.  For a time, America came together as one nation.  We did not think of culture, ethnic, color, poor, rich, different.  We mourned the killing of our Americans.  The American flag was seen everywhere, and we came together as one nation.  The enemy sees America as one and wish to divide us any way possible.  America was founded as one nation under God, with liberty and justice for all.  Our differences make us who we are and that is why we are all Americans.

 This Coronavirus Pandemic has once again brought our nation together with neighbors helping neighbors, and all nationalities helping to get us through this nightmare.  I am really tired of the politics that tell us what we can and can not do.  Now that the states are choosing how to reopen safely, let us be the Americans we know how to be to follow the rules and work together to get our country back to One nation Under God with Liberty and Justice for all.  I pray that our political parties will work together for the good of our country, not for the power to tell us how to live, work, play, go to church, and to be divided according to their rules.  I pray that Americans will work together to do what is best for all who live in this country united.  We have done it before, and we can do it again.

     Memorial Day is just one day but it could be the beginning of our celebration every day as a salute to those who make a difference in the lives of others.  We should never lose sight of the fact that Americans of all nationalities, various religions, men and women from all walks of life and millions have served America to preserve our freedom.  They gave the ultimate sacrifice, their lives, to continue what America stands for.  Is it not time for us to come together as one, a nation founded to honor the God who blesses America?  If we do not begin to use our voices for what we believe in, is it possible that our men and women we honor this week died in vain?  Take a moment to remember the Pledge of Allegiance.  Do we know just what the Pledge of Allegiance means?  I want to share this wonderful meaning of the Pledge spoken by Red Skeleton.  He learned this through the words of Mr. Laswell a teacher, who wanted his students to understand what they were saying each day as they recited this Pledge of Allegiance together.

I, me an individual a committee of one, Pledge, dedicate all of my worldly goods to give without self-pity, Allegiance, my love and my devotion, To the flag, our standard, Old Glory, a symbol of freedom.  Wherever she waves, there’s respect because your loyalty has given her a dignity that shouts freedom and is everybody’s job! Of the United, that means that we have all come together.  States, individual communities that have united into 50 states (when this was written, there were 48 states) of America, 50 individual communities with pride and dignity and purpose, all divided with imaginary boundaries, yet united to a common purpose, and that’s love for country.  And to the republic, a state in which sovereign power is invested in representatives chosen by the people to govern.  And government is the people and it’s from the people to the leaders, not from the leaders to the people.  For which it stands, one nation, under God one nation, meaning “so blessed by God”, Indivisible, incapable of being divided, with liberty, which is freedom-the right of power to live one’s own life without threat, fear or some sort of retaliation.  And Justice, the principle or quality of dealing fairly with others, For all, which means, boys and girls, it is as much your country as it is mine (Since I was a small boy, two states have been added to our country and two words have been added to the pledge of Allegiance.) Under God! Wouldn’t it be a pity if someone said that it is a prayer and that the pledge would be eliminated from schools too!   

God bless America and God bless the many men and women who serve their country so we may continue to recite the Pledge of Allegiance!

I leave you with this thought from Daniel Webster – Let our object be our country, our whole country.  And, by the blessings of God may that country itself become a vast and splendid monument, not of oppression and terror, but of wisdom, of peace, and of liberty, upon which the world may gaze with admiration forever.

Barbara Bush – Some people give time, some give money, some their skills and connections.  Some literally give their life’s blood.  But, everyone has something to give.

This is what America is all about.  Amen!       

Have a safe and blessed Memorial Day!


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