In Memorial, In Reconciliation

I heard someone the other day chide that, in case we forgot, this day is Memorial Day, it is not National Barbeque Day.

American flag, cenotaph marker, white picket fence, backlit by sun

We give thanks today for those who have served our country in the cause of freedom.

That’s true in the same way that Christmas is not Santa Claus Day and Easter is not about a bunny, Thanksgiving is not about Football, Independence Day is not about fireworks and Labor Day is not about marking the end of summer.

Yes, today, we pause to remember our military service personnel who have died serving their country and ours. We recognize and honor all those who have served in the armed forces, living or dead. Whether we take part in a parade, fly the American flag, or simply pause for a few minutes of silent remembrance, we commemorate and honor our military personnel. Memorial Day, whose roots date back to the years immediately following our Civil War (or, the War Between the States, if you prefer), was conceived to honor those who gave their lives, and to foster reconciliation.

And yes, like every other significant American holiday, we celebrate by eating together with family and friends. Breaking bread together is one of the oldest signs of peace and friendship. It is a tradition that dates back thousands of years.

Peace. Friendship. Breaking Bread. What better way to honor those who have fought to end violence, hate and strife?

May peace and love, strength, courage, remembrance, gratitude and hope be on your menu today.

Life Is Honest, Open and True: Today, give thanks and recognition for the efforts and sacrifices our military service men and women. If you need to reconcile with someone, today make plans to do so. If you can, take a meal to someone who may go hungry without your help. Peace, friendship, breaking bread.

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