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Scott P. Richert

Remembering the Fallen

By May 23, 2014

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During peacetime, it is perhaps not surprising that Americans lose sight of the meaning of Memorial Day. We treat it as if it is simply the start of summer or, at best, as a day to honor the veterans of foreign wars. But the true purpose of Memorial Day is to celebrate not those who survived, but those who fell. Veterans march in parades not in their own honor but in honor of their fellow soldiers, sailors, aviators, and Marines who never returned.

In the wake of the war in Iraq and the war in Afghanistan, our thoughts turn properly this Memorial Day weekend to all those who have given their lives in the service of their country. The Church teaches us that we should pray for the dead, so that their souls may find rest. Over this weekend, we can resolve to pray the Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and Monday Prayers for the Dead, and consider making the Weekly Prayers for the Faithful Departed a part of our daily prayer.

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.

(Memorial Day 2008 Parade in Rockford, Illinois. Photo by Scott P. Richert)

Weekly Prayers for the Dead:

May 28, 2010 at 12:31 pm
(1) Dan says:

We live in the Home of the Free BECAUSE of the Brave. God Bless all of the troops in harm’s way and those keeping the peace, no matter where they are stationed.

May 28, 2010 at 3:42 pm
(2) Eloise says:

Thank you for this article and the meaning behind it–and also many thanks to those fighting, dying, and living for our country.

God bless America!

May 27, 2011 at 12:07 pm
(3) Chris says:

Thanks for getting it right Scott. Every year I feel bad reminding people who thank me for my service on Memorial day that the real meaning of the day isn’t for those
Of us who served, but for our friends who didn’t get back.

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