29 May 2006

Memorial Day

"You will suffer in the world. But take courage! I have overcome the world." John 16:33

Jesus' reminder found in today's Gospel speaks a word of encouragement to those who have lost life, limb or loved one in the name of liberty. Those men and women who have laid down their lives on the altar of our freedom have walked a noble path behind the Lord's example. We honor those whose sacrifices have purchased our nation's freedom and defended the safety of countless other countries and peoples.

Few hymnals print all six verses of the Julia Howe's (pictured below) Battle Hymn of the Republic. The fifth verse bears repeating. Current arrangers and publishers have changed Howe's original words. It is here reprinted in its original.
  • In the beauty of the lilies Christ was born across the sea.
  • With a glory in His bosom that transfigures you and me:
  • As He died to make men holy, let us die to make men free;
  • While God is marching on. Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!
  • Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! While God is marching on.

As we commemorate Memorial Day, we remember all those who have purchased our freedom and defended our safety. May we be mindful and grateful for their service.

"In all things holy liberty and freedom must reign, that we may have no other law or constraint than that of love . . . "

St. Francis de Sales

No comments: