Wednesday, May 20, 2009

-------- With Heartfelt Appreciation -------- Celebrating Memorial Day

Yes, there will be picnics and BBQs, visits to the beaches and parks, but sometimes we forget the reason we have this three day weekend that marks the beginning of the summer season.

Memorial Day was originally celebrated on May 30th. It was known as a day of mourning for those members of the armed forces who paid the ultimate price to insure our freedom. Many businesses closed for the day and people would go to the cemetery and put fresh flowers and flags on the graves of fallen soldiers to honor their sacrifice. There were parades and prayer services. Back then, Memorial Day was celebrated with respect and reverance, honoring the memory of those who paid with their lives. It was not a three day weekend unless the date fell on a Friday or Monday. Then a bill was introduced changing Memorial Day to the last Monday in May-and lo and behold our three day welcome-to-summer began.
Today, Memorial Day has become more about picnics and BBQs and the rememberance part is all but forgotten. For the past two years, I had the honor of accompanying groups to Calverton cemetery to place flags at all of the graves of the veterans buried there. It is an amazing sight to see and a sobering reminder of that freedom is not free.
This year, this Memorial Day, please take some time out of your day and away from your celebration to remember and pray for those who fought and died for our freedom and for those who are currently out there protecting our freedom. May God Bless Them.