SAINT FRANCIS DE SALES Sirach, Chapter 2, Verse 15-17 15 Those who fear the Lord do not disobey his words; those who love him...
Sunday, June 5, 2016
Monday, June 6, 2016 D-day Memorial
Mark, Chapter 12, Verse 12
They were seeking to arrest him, but they feared the crowd, for they realized that he had addressed the parable to them. So they left him and went away.
It is natural to fear something you cannot control. Christ could not be controlled by the men in charge of the Temple system; so they feared Him and they feared the crowd that followed Him. Christ’s message was good news to the crowd who were but pawns in the Jewish Temple system of wealth and power.
We in times of trouble should be like Tobit and seek to walk all the days of our lives in paths of truth and righteousness. It was Tobit who defied those in power to do an act of mercy by burying the dead. While his neighbors mocked him and saying to one another: “He is still not afraid! Once before he was hunted down for execution because of this very thing; yet now that he has scarcely escaped, here he is again burying the dead!” (Tobit 2:8) Love makes sacrifices. He (Christ) laid down His life for us. We should also lay down our live for our brothers. (1 John 3:16)
Most of us by the grace of God are never confronted with such terrors of evil. Yet, we too in our quiet lives can lay down ourselves in service to our brothers.
The men who took the beach at D-Day were afraid because they too knew what may happen to them, yet too, they were succored by our Lord and our nation’s prayers.
This is the prayer originally entitled "Let Our Hearts Be Stout" written by President Franklin D. Roosevelt as Allied troops were invading German-occupied Europe during World War II. The prayer was read to the Nation on radio on the evening of D-Day, June 6, 1944, while American, British and Canadian troops were fighting to establish five beach heads on the coast of Normandy in northern France.
The previous night, June 5th, the President had also been on the radio to announce that Allied troops had entered Rome. The spectacular news that Rome had been liberated was quickly superseded by news of the gigantic D-Day invasion which began at 6:30 a.m. on June 6th. By midnight, about 57,000 American and 75,000 British and Canadian soldiers had made it ashore, amid losses that included 2,500 killed and 8,500 wounded.
My Fellow Americans:
Last night, when I spoke with you about the fall of Rome, I knew at that moment that troops of the United States and our Allies were crossing the Channel in another and greater operation. It has come to pass with success thus far.
And so, in this poignant hour, I ask you to join with me in prayer:
Almighty God: Our sons, pride of our nation, this day have set upon a mighty endeavor, a struggle to preserve our Republic, our religion, and our civilization, and to set free a suffering humanity.
Lead them straight and true; give strength to their arms, stoutness to their hearts, steadfastness in their faith.
They will need Thy blessings. Their road will be long and hard. For the enemy is strong. He may hurl back our forces. Success may not come with rushing speed, but we shall return again and again; and we know that by Thy grace, and by the righteousness of our cause, our sons will triumph.
They will be sore tried, by night and by day, without rest -- until the victory is won. The darkness will be rent by noise and flame. Men's souls will be shaken with the violences of war.
For these men are lately drawn from the ways of peace. They fight not for the lust of conquest. They fight to end conquest. They fight to liberate. They fight to let justice arise, and tolerance and goodwill among all Thy people. They yearn but for the end of battle, for their return to the haven of home.
Some will never return. Embrace these, Father, and receive them, Thy heroic servants, into Thy kingdom.
And for us at home -- fathers, mothers, children, wives, sisters, and brothers of brave men overseas, whose thoughts and prayers are ever with them -- help us, Almighty God, to rededicate ourselves in renewed faith in Thee in this hour of great sacrifice.
Many people have urged that I call the nation into a single day of special prayer. But because the road is long and the desire is great, I ask that our people devote themselves in a continuance of prayer. As we rise to each new day, and again when each day is spent, let words of prayer be on our lips, invoking Thy help to our efforts.
Give us strength, too -- strength in our daily tasks, to redouble the contributions we make in the physical and the material support of our armed forces.
And let our hearts be stout, to wait out the long travail, to bear sorrows that may come, to impart our courage unto our sons wheresoever they may be.
And, O Lord, give us faith. Give us faith in Thee; faith in our sons; faith in each other; faith in our united crusade. Let not the keeness of our spirit ever be dulled. Let not the impacts of temporary events, of temporal matters of but fleeting moment -- let not these deter us in our unconquerable purpose.
With Thy blessing, we shall prevail over the unholy forces of our enemy. Help us to conquer the apostles of greed and racial arrogances. Lead us to the saving of our country, and with our sister nations into a world unity that will spell a sure peace -- a peace invulnerable to the schemings of unworthy men. And a peace that will let all of men live in freedom, reaping the just rewards of their honest toil.
Thy will be done, Almighty God. Amen.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt - June 6, 1944
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