Monday, May 29, 2017

Memorial Day Prayer

On Sunday May 28, the American Embassy in Manila sponsored a Memorial Ceremony at the American Cemetery. Because the Area Presidency, Elder Bowen, Elder Haynie, and Elder Schmutz were gone to other assignments and Vic Taylor was traveling out of town, Jeffrey was asked to say the opening prayer as a representative of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day-Saints.

He reported back his assignment to the Area presidency so I asked for the text of his prayer. It was a public prayer so I feel I can publish it here for the 10 or so people who read this blog.

“Our Heavenly Father,

“We are grateful this beautiful morning that the President and Congress of the United States and the leaders of the Republic of the Philippines have jointly declared Memorial Day to be a day of remembrance of the noble sacrifices of those who gave their last measure of devotion in the service of our ideals and in defense of our nations and to be a day of prayer for a lasting peace among all nations.  We now unitedly join in prayer to Thee in grateful remembrance.  We remember and honor these guardians of our inalienable rights.  We honor these courageous and dedicated men and women who sacrificed their lives for our nations.  We honor their final resting places and humbly petition Thee that they and their families will be blessed from on High from eternity to eternity. We pray that family members of these devoted men and women will be granted the comforting and supernal knowledge that these sacred sacrifices have great and lasting significance and are not in vain.  We ask for wisdom and purpose to enjoy and protect the liberties and freedoms [preserved] to us by these great and noble dead.  We also unitedly pray for lasting peace among nations that all may enjoy the divine heritage of fundamental human rights in all of their varieties and beauties.  We pray for the blessings of liberty to rest upon us so long as there be a band dedicated to doing that which is good.  We pray for those lands who provide freedom to their citizens, including the United States of America and the Republic of the Philippines in which we now congregate, that divine favor and blessing may be enjoyed.  

“Now, in memory of our God, our freedom, our peace and our families, we dedicate this memorial service to Thee and to these fallen heroes who have given us the opportunities we now enjoy.  In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.”

Jeffrey got the opportunity to meet and sit on the stand with Brigadier General Jansen and Vice Admiral Narciso Vingson as well as Father Peter Chilver and Rabbi Eliyahu Azaria and felt it was a significant privilege to participate with them on the program. Their speeches caused me to reflect deeply, as did the names of fallen heroes on the walls we walked around.

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