BY STEVE DUNN
Memorial Day Weekend has arrived. For the first time in years I have had no pastoral responsibilities during this time and basically unlimited freedom to relax, to follow my own agenda, and to refresh mind, body, and spirit. An old friend of mine, Kenneth Hall referred to this as “freescence.”
Saturday morning when I arose (early as usual) I drove around hitting some garage sales and doing some grocery shopping. I noticed how many of the homes had people out early diligently doing yard work or garage doors open to reveal people working on some home improvement project. It seemed to me that they were getting things out of the way so they could enjoy Sunday and Monday more fully. I wondered how many barbecues or picnics were scheduled. Or having lived in northwest Indiana for a long time, how many were headed to lake houses or lakes or parks or beaches for recreation and relaxation
But then I found my thoughts directed towards cemeteries or town squares that tomorrow will be the site of memorial observances for those who have fallen in the cause of freedom. One of my strongest childhood memories growing up in a small town in Ohio where that morning began with a parade, a service in the park, prayers and a honor guard that would issue a 21-gun salute followed by the solemn playing of “Taps.” The place would be full regardless of what would happen the rest of the day–and this would occur rain or shine.
I wonder how many people will take the time tomorrow morning to join such an observance, or even pause to say a prayer of thanksgiving for these honored dead and express words of encouragement to those who grieve on Memorial Day, not barbecue.
I plan on being one of those. There are too many men and women who have paid the ultimate price for my freedom to not do so.
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