This weekend, but especially Monday we celebrate Memorial Day. To many it means a 3 day weekend at the lake or the beginning of the summer season. Memorial Day was borne out of the Civil War and a desire to honor our dead of both the North and the South. It was officially proclaimed o May 5, 1868 by General John Logan. In his General Order No. 11. “The 30th of May, 1868, designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers, or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village and hamlet churchyard in the land,” he proclaimed. The date of Decoration Day, as he called it, was chosen because it wasn’t the anniversary of any particular battle.
Today we hold in special memory all who have died in all our wars to keep our country free; in the Civil war, the two World Wars, Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan, and Iraq.
Let us also hold in memory all who have met death through senseless violence both on streets and in their homes.
We hold in memory the millions whose lives have been snuffed out through willful abortions.
We hold in memory all whose lives have been offered up on the altars of prejudice, hunger, neglect and hatred.
We hold in memory all who have been slaughtered on the highways and streets of our country.
We hold in memory all whose lives have been terminated through the lethal effects of drugs, of all types and descriptions.
We hold in memory the martyrs’ blood of the past and now the martyrs today whose blood has been shed so that others might know the love and mercy of God the Father and our Redemption through his Son, Jesus.
We hold in memory all our dear loved ones, who now share the eternal vision of glory with the Father and the joy and peace of Christ’s resurrection.
May each of you have a blessed and safe Memorial Day Weekend. There will not be any masses on Monday 27th here at the Cathedral. Join our Bishop in the Memorial Day Mass at 9:00am at Resurrection Cemetery. I will celebrate Mass in Bolivar at St. Wenceslaus Cemetery where my parents are buried.