Monday, May 26, 2008

May 26, 2008 Memorial Day


Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day of remembrance for those who have died in our nation's service.

There are many stories as to its actual beginnings, with over two dozen cities and towns laying claim to being the birthplace of Memorial Day.

There is evidence that organized women's groups in the South were decorating graves before the end of the Civil War. A hymn published in 1867, "Kneel Where Our Loves Are Sleeping," by Nella L. Sweet carried the dedication "To The Ladies of the South Who Are Decorating the Graves of the Confederate Dead."

In May 1966, Waterloo N.Y. was officially declared the birthplace of Memorial Day by President Lyndon Johnson. It is more likely, however, that Memorial Day had many separate beginnings.

Each gathering of people to honor the war dead tapped into the general human need to honor our dead.

Memorial Day is about reconciliation and remembrance as we honor those who gave their all.

A blessed Memorial Day.

1 comment:

Stushie said...

Memorial Day Sonnet

If Liberty means anything to me,
I will remember what my freedom cost,
By those who gave their all to keep me free,
Whose lives were sacrificed, but never lost.
I will remind myself of what they did,
And keep them dearly cherished in my heart;
Their honor never from me shall be hid
And I will know they always did their part
To save our nation and its people here,
To pledge their lives in defense of our ways,
To show that freedom always outlives fear,
And sacrifice is hallowed all our days.
If Liberty means anything to me,
I will remember those who kept me free.

© John Stuart 2008
Pastor at Erin Presbyterian Church,
Knoxville, Tennessee

Audio at: