Today is Remembrance Day, and also Sunday. I stayed in church and so missed the ceremony at the cenotaph. The Legion is about a block from the church, so we heard the fly-by of jets that signaled 11am, and the sounding of the cannons that marked the end of the moment of silence. Our church service recognized Remembrance Day very well, so I'm glad I stayed.
A young man in our congregation, Greg, sang "The Green Fields of France." His song made me think about the play I saw last weekend, The Wars at the Playhouse. Then it made me think of Afghanistan, then I was crying, and I looked around and so was mostly everyone else. Then Greg choked and cried and had to take a few breaths, then he finished the song. Then Svend, a WW2 Navy veteran from our congregation spoke about The Memory Project. He told us about the sinking of the Canadian warship Valleyfield in the North Atlantic in 1944. We prayed about memory and peace and "us" and "them," and how it's really all "us" everywhere. It was a good service.
I spent extra time after the service checking in with young and old friends over coffee. I left feeling that the well had been filled again. It's funny, when I skip church, I think it's going to be some luxurious thing and I'll have extra precious time for an activity or the family. In reality, I miss it significantly when I do not attend, even for one week. Worship in community helps me renew my courage and optimism. Somehow after spending the morning in church I find more time and energy for everything else. It's a wonderful thing.
At home this afternoon without TV or newspapers I met by phone with a friend to plan a meeting for tomorrow evening. I edited some poems, sent a few emails and made salad rolls for lunch and a warm supper for the family. It was dark, damp and grey outside, fitting for a day to remember those who fought in wars to protect us, and to think about peace. Bundled indoors in a sweater, it seemed right to look out, think ahead, be aware and be sure. And I'm sure that only in community ( a really big one too ) can we find the courage and power for lasting peace everywhere.
question: how did you remember today?
mompoet - remembering