Sunday, November 13, 2011

We will remember them

This sacred day is dedicated to all those who gave their lives between 1914-2011 in defence of this nation; for liberty, democracy, justice and truth. To those who died for King or Queen and Country; to those who gave their lives yesterday in order that we may enjoy today and a thousand tomorrows. Honour and respect are due to you, and we bow our heads in memory of your sacrifice.

The poppy is a remembrance not only of the millions who have died, but of what they died for.

Lest we forget our liberty, traditions, faith and democracy, we will remember them.


Blogger niconoclast said...

Misty eyed unfocused sentiment and refuges of scoundrels comes to mind.I hate Rem Sunday.Its when a narrow clique foist this pseudo gravitas ceremony on the nation using religious mumbo jumbo to lend it a patina of respectability.No great issues were fought over here.As soon as we defeated Hitler we voted for slavery of Socialism ourselves then the EU.All deaths were in vain.America should not have got involved.The stupid British were not worth saving and they have proved it a thousand times since.Cue al the religious idiots accusing me of pacifism.I am pro Israel and think they should nuke Iran.Amen.The ritualised abuse of me can now commence.Yawn..

13 November 2011 at 10:04  
Blogger David B said...

Hear Hear!

And, though they will not read it, a few words of appreciation for the dedicated volunteers in my locality who help us remember, not only on this day, but throughout the year, by keeping the war graves at a local wartime airfield immaculately groomed, where mainly very young men from Poland, Holland, Canada and others, as well as Britain, lie.

And for those dedicated volunteers who have restored a local airfield control tower to its wartime condition, and those who work at the Sunderland Museum At Pembroke Dock.

And those who do similar things throughout the country.

They help us remember what should not be forgotten.

David B

13 November 2011 at 10:07  
Blogger David B said...

Just to be clear, my 'Hear Hear!' was aimed at HG, not at the person I crossed posts with.

David B

13 November 2011 at 10:08  
Blogger len said...

We indeed should remember them, all that fell in two terrible wars and the present conflicts for they gave their lives for the cause of freedom and to defeat the tyranny that threatened us all.We owe them all a debt of gratitude we should never forget.

13 November 2011 at 10:22  
Blogger bluedog said...

Your Grace

Somewhere near a Great War battlefield is a headstone that reads:

No day begins
Nor evening falls
But that we think
Of our boy.

13 November 2011 at 10:29  
Blogger Gnostic said...

Well this army brat (my dad was a 22 year man) wears her poppy with pride.

13 November 2011 at 10:36  
Blogger Berserker said...

For an uncompromising look at war everyone should read the Barrack-Room Ballads of Kipling. Written a quarter of a century before the slaughter of the Great War.

I quote from 'Tommy'

You talk o' better food for us, an' schools, an' fires, an' all:
We'll wait for extry rations if you treat us rational.
Don't mess about the cook-room slops, but prove it to our face
The Widow's Uniform is not the soldier-man's disgrace.
For it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' "Chuck him out, the brute!"
But it's "Saviour of 'is country" when the guns begin to shoot;
An' it's Tommy this, an' Tommy that, an' anything you please;
An' Tommy ain't a bloomin' fool -- you bet that Tommy sees!

13 November 2011 at 11:01  
Blogger martin sewell said...

I feel very, very sorry for those who do not " get" Remembrance Day. We are a privileged people whose comforts and hopes are built on the sacrifice of others from Bethlehem to Camp Bastian.

13 November 2011 at 11:02  
Blogger graham wood said...

The first post on this Blog is best ignored and then forgottn - especially today of all days.
I advise, do not be tempted to engage in futile comment in response, or even acknowledgement.

Just for today especially, we will "remember them"

13 November 2011 at 11:14  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...


13 November 2011 at 12:01  
Blogger Dreadnaught said...

Fair enough YG

13 November 2011 at 12:02  
Blogger Archbishop Cranmer said...

And if you do that again, Mr Dreadnaught, the axe will fall.

13 November 2011 at 12:06  
Blogger Mark In Mayenne said...

I don't "do" religeon, but in this little bit of France, we in local municpal band play at the mass in the church. This is seemly.

13 November 2011 at 12:06  
Blogger The Judicious Hooker said...

O YG - you are so Erastian at times!

Remembrance Sunday is an important day in the civil calendar and one we do well to observe in gratitude for our hard won freedoms. While it can overlap into liturgical observance, can it really be considered 'sacred'?

Sacred means connected with God and divine matters. This day commemorates those of the Sovereign's Forces who have fallen in battle.

Let's get our terminology right lest we confuse civil observance with Divine Service.

That said,

May they rest in peace. Amen.

13 November 2011 at 12:34  
Blogger Manfarang said...

If we can have some Kipling how about Thomas Hardy



They throw in Drummer Hodge, to rest

Uncoffined - just as found:

His landmark is a kopje-crest

That breaks the veldt around;

And foreign constellations west

Each night above his mound.


Young Hodge the Drummer never knew -

Fresh from his Wessex home -

The meaning of the broad Karoo,

The Bush, the dusty loam,

And why uprose to nightly view

Strange stars amid the gloam.


Yet portion of that unknown plain

Will Hodge forever be;

His homely Northern breast and brain

Grow to some Southern tree,

And strange-eyed constellations reign

His stars eternally.

13 November 2011 at 12:37  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

I have to say that whatever people think of the Beeb, they do a very good coverage of this morning's event both on TV and Radio 4. The event and coverage are always very moving. I wonder though what will happen when the WW2 contingent and those who were alive during that war and its aftermath die off. I very much prefer Armistice Day and the Sunday to be dedicated to the Great War and WW2 rather than roll other wars and conflicts into it. The themes and contexts are really quite different underneath. Perhaps we should have an extra Veterans Day or something like the Merkins have but perhaps not a national holiday like theirs? Though I'm not sure the "Happy Veterans Day!" message I got from a Merkin colleague last Thursday was appropriate in tone for the UK.

13 November 2011 at 12:39  
Blogger AncientBriton said...

I missed this morning's coverage DanJO being elsewhere Remembering (wearing my Veteran's Badge).
I wish I could say the same for last night's Festival of Remembrance at the Royal Albert Hall. The coverage was as good as ever but the content has been turned into a sort of heart rending musical spectacular. Yet another inappropriate victim of 'change.

13 November 2011 at 13:09  
Blogger whitespacebug said...

Returned home from Church. Wife Said " we listened to the silence on the radio". Bizarre, but there you go.

13 November 2011 at 13:44  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

It breaks this man’s heart when he hears of the latest loss on the radio, as much as it always does when he reads the remembrance plaques in every town and village.

13 November 2011 at 13:50  
Blogger Oswin said...

whitebugspace: how apt your wife's remark, and deeply moving too. Pax.

13 November 2011 at 17:12  
Blogger Doug Stein said...

I'm just a Yank who's here in London this week for the first time since 1978. I am grateful that I was able to join you in silent prayer both on Friday at 11 and this morning at Church. Quite powerful to remember those who put themselves on the line for their country and loved ones (and many whome they didn't even know) to resist the evils of the day.

The two words from Scripture that came to mind were:

1) John 15:13 - Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.

2) Isaiah 2:3-5 - Many peoples will come and say, "Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob.
He will teach us his ways, so that we may walk in his paths.” The law will go out from Zion, the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. He will judge between the nations and will settle disputes for many peoples. They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore. Come, O house of Jacob, let us walk in the light of the LORD.

It's a good day to remember those who acted upon the Lord's word recorded in John while we hope for his return and fulfillment of the words recorded in Isaiah!

Peace to all here in the UK!


13 November 2011 at 17:48  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

The 'Moment of Silence' is the perfect metaphor for the impotence and irrelevance of man in this post-modern secular age. We do nothing because there is nothing we can do. We say nothing because there is nothing we can say. We thereby give testimony to the meaninglessness of sacrifice when by our silence we deny the God who gives meaning to life. The transient benefit of the one is cast aside for the transient benefit of another. In the end, we declare that there will be no remembrance of either - for Good or Ill. In our silence, we do not remember the dead so much as we mourn our own insignificance in the face of death.

Sin brings death, and death brings meaninglessness to our temporal existence. It is intended to drive the creature to seek out the God who created Him. He is the answer that releases the muted tongue. The Christian never has cause to stand in impotent silence for he always has recourse to understanding. In the midst of the ashes, he can say with confidence "Shall we accept good from the Lord and not evil? The Lord gives and the Lord takes away. Blessed be the name of the Lord."


13 November 2011 at 18:04  
Blogger Shacklefree said...

Tried to listen to the silence at the airport prior to boarding. The problem was the muslims deliberatly talking through it. We had to give a very big shush to get them to shut up.

13 November 2011 at 19:00  
Blogger whitespacebug said...

Oswin, you are very kind. Always a moving service.

13 November 2011 at 19:32  
Blogger G. Tingey said...

And betrayed and sold down the river by every Prime Minister from 1979 to the present ....

13 November 2011 at 19:46  
Blogger English Pensioner said...

The main thing that I noticed was that the crowd at the Service by our local war memorial was the biggest that I can remember for a long while. The Parish Church was packed afterwards with people of all ages, standing room only; I've never seen that before, even at Christmas.
In my own blog I have written more about the Remembrance Service and also about World War One and our "blind" politicians. Well I think that it's worth reading!

13 November 2011 at 20:59  
Blogger non mouse said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

13 November 2011 at 22:00  
Blogger non mouse said...

Yes, there is great power in this National Sound of Silence.

Among other things, it shows how much we still love this land - and people - that they loved.

13 November 2011 at 22:03  
Blogger Johnny said...

Oh the pity of war. Having watched the opening scene of a film where young men landed on a beach(Omaha, 1944) I am humbled. This was a just war. Defending our very way of life (and to some extent WW1).

On the other hand should I be moved by the deaths of professional soldiers on futile campaigns that are not protecting my way of life (please don't tell me we are fighting "terror").

Those young conscripts are true heroes. Help for Heroes? Yes there are heroic acts done constantly, but not in my name!

14 November 2011 at 08:04  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

Surely once a nation's leaders commit itselfthe country to war then it's our duty to support this? There was a time when anything less would be regarded as treason. We don't need Lord Haw Haws in our midst telling our troops and their comrades and families they are dying for nothing!

14 November 2011 at 13:10  
Blogger whitespacebug said...

Dodo. It seems you would think the German people right to support Hitler on that logic.

14 November 2011 at 16:19  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Dodo: "Surely once a nation's leaders commit itselfthe country to war then it's our duty to support this?"

Woahhhhh. What about conscience and the island (or perhaps oasis if I wanted to be mean) that according to some Christians it ought to give from the demands of duty?

Johnny: "Those young conscripts are true heroes. Help for Heroes? Yes there are heroic acts done constantly, but not in my name!"

Yes. This is where things start to go very wrong. People are not automatically heroes for being in the military. To claim so is jingoistic propaganda for foreign office adventures I think, and if we're not careful the poppy appeal will get sucked down with it. It's already going that way.

14 November 2011 at 18:14  
Blogger Ttony said...

I deliberately left this until after the day, but can you explain why you think Rememberance only applies to 1914 onwards? Are earlier deaths pro patria less worthy of remembrance?

14 November 2011 at 20:18  
Blogger Archbishop Cranmer said...

Mr Ttony,

The matter was decided by the Royal British Legion. We tend not to remember the fallen of Agincourt or the Battle of Bosworth on Remembrance Sunday.

14 November 2011 at 20:24  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Ttony. There was never carnage on the scale of 1914-1918 before. Nasty industrial warfare, with big guns that did the majority of the killing...

14 November 2011 at 20:26  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

whitespacebug and DanJ0

Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves.
(Romans 13:1-7))

"Give to Caesar what is Caesar's and to God what is God's."
(Mark 12:17)

"Everything comes from love, all is ordained for the salvation of man, God does nothing without this goal in mind."
(St. Catherine of Siena)

14 November 2011 at 20:33  
Blogger whitespacebug said...

God established the Nazis, Dodo? When you're already in a hole, it's best to stop digging.

14 November 2011 at 20:40  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

whitespacebug, permitted the Nazi's, and the Egyptians, Asyrians and Babylonians as a chastening rod! Read your Old Testament. The Romans too who crucified Christ.

You either believe God is in control of human history or not and that there is a purpose and direction to it.

We have to decide how to respond to the situations we find ourselves in.

It's not my hole - it's the paradox and mystery of evil.

14 November 2011 at 22:10  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

14 November 2011 at 22:31  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

14 November 2011 at 22:44  
Blogger Oswin said...

DO try to bear in mind the nature of the subject in hand!

14 November 2011 at 23:13  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

Oswin,quite right, sir. Comment deleted.

14 November 2011 at 23:58  
Blogger Oswin said...

Dodo: as a matter of interest, how does one delete comments??? Where's the mechanism? Ta.

15 November 2011 at 02:19  
Blogger whitespacebug said...

Oswin. At the bottom left of your posts, you should see a little dustbin icon. That should do the trick.

15 November 2011 at 06:56  
Blogger whitespacebug said...

Dodo, I was forgetting myself. Of course you are theologically correct about the "mystery " of evil. That wasn't really the point though, we got off track. Those people we admire today are not those who said " it is our duty to help Adolf invade most of Europe and slaughter millions in the process", but those who resisted him. Are you suggesting we've got it wrong, and those who accepted their duty to Adolf were obeying the Bible and doing God's work? I'm not calling anyone a Nazi, this is just where your logic leads.

15 November 2011 at 07:03  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

whitespacebug, I hope I'm not saying that!

I suspect the majority of German soldiers and indeed the majority of German folk had no idea of the true evil of Nazism. Let's remember Facism was initially hailed as protection against the equally evil Communist regime in Russia. Those who did appreciate Hitler's intentions as it became increasingly apparent the regime was evil, would then have a duty to resist.

The passsage of St Paul I quoted and the words of Jesus raise fundamental questions I don't have answers to. I can only speak personally and if was living during those times and became aware of the evils of either Nazism or Communism during those dark days, I pray God would have given me the courage to fight against them in whatever way I could, either through a passive refusal to cooperate or through active rebellion.

The original point I was making is that this country has committed its troops to wars in foreign countries. Our troops are dying. I believe it is our duty to support our troops and to support the mission. For us sit at home and bad mouth our politicians and claim lives are being wasted undermines the endeavour. Whatever we think of the right or wrongs of the decisions, our leaders had the right to take them and they cannot be said to be the actions of an evil regime.

15 November 2011 at 09:13  
Blogger Oswin said...

whitebugspace: thank you, I'm much obliged to you. It just shows how observant I am...NOT! :o(

15 November 2011 at 16:37  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

Oswin, happy deleting! There's no time restriction, so it should keep you busy for a few days ;0)

15 November 2011 at 18:26  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Oswin, there’s certainly a lot to delete !! Ha Ha !

15 November 2011 at 19:31  
Blogger Oswin said...

Inspector & Dodo:

So true!

Unfortunately, I don't seem able to access your wee 'dustbin' icons ... clearly a design fault. Tee hees all round. ;o)

15 November 2011 at 22:31  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

Oswin,I've double checked and regrettably you're not one of my alter-egos, so I can't assist. Sometimes even I forget!

16 November 2011 at 00:03  
Blogger Oswin said...

Dodo: perhaps, after all, I am a corrective of your OWN imagination; or conscience even?

Hell, it's time for my medication!

16 November 2011 at 16:09  
Blogger The Way of the Dodo said...

Oswin, be sure to take mine too!

16 November 2011 at 16:34  
Blogger Oswin said...

Hee hee :o)

17 November 2011 at 00:15  

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