Pray Brethren

Pray Brethren

Monday, August 8, 2011

Honoring Fallen Heroes

As the sad news continues to pour in regarding the thirty-eight Special Forces soldiers and their Afghani allies who died when the chopper they were in was shot down by Taliban forces, almost all of the reports of late have focused on the tears of parents, siblings, and friends of the men who died. We must remember that their deaths are tragic, but they are not merely tragic. When young blood is spilled upon the altar of liberty our reaction should not be to disavow war as senseless, but rather bring ourselves to attention and remember the words of Lincoln:

It is for us the living… to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain.
Those who decry war and violence as senseless fail to honor the men who gave their lives for the good of others. When parents lay their young sons to sleep tonight, they must be ready and willing to give up the possibility of grandchildren and allow their sons to honor the men who have gone before them. We honor our soldiers – whether they are in the military or in the priesthood – not by decrying their sacrifice but by following their footsteps and entering into a higher form of love and communion.

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