Clergy Corner: A Memorial Day Prayer

File Photo
Pastor Ron Ritter, Commander, Chaplain Corps, U.S. Navy (Retired).

■ By Ronald Ritter / Contributed

This coming weekend, Americans throughout our country will pause to remember and give thanks for those who have paid and continue to pay the ultimate price – their lives, for the preservation of peace and freedom in our communities, cities, states and nation.
The joyful celebrations that accompany Memorial Day Weekend in America invariably are tempered by the recognition that peace and freedom are never free. There are always men and women who, by their sworn duty as military members or peace officers at the local, state and national levels, sacrifice their lives if need be so that peace and freedom will prevail.
Tragically, we continue to live in a world where the many forces of evil, whether local or global in nature, insidiously work to destroy or significantly diminish the gifts and blessings that result where and when peace and freedom are given free rein. In a fallen world, that’s just the way the script is written.
On the vast global stage, members of our Armed Forces do a good and just work when, within the boundaries of their call to serve, fight and, if necessary, kill, preserve the foundations of peace and freedom with which America has been blessed for 251 years.
At the conclusion of last week’s national “Peace Officers Memorial Day and Police Week,” Hemet Police Chief David Brown reminded our citizens that “our police officers are still willing to stand the gap between us those who would harm us…I want to encourage my fellow citizens to take a moment to consider the enormous sacrifice, courage and risk taken every day by our police officers.”
Through the faithful service of our locally and nationally committed peace officers and military, “God displays His faithfulness in keeping His promise to provide us with all we need for this body and life. On account of their diligent watchfulness, we are protected from evil attacks from our enemies. We are able to live our lives peacefully because they battle on our behalf. Through their vocation, we are guarded from the evil one who wants our lives to be filled with misery and unrest.”
The promise of God’s faithfulness applies also for all peace officers and members of the armed forces. “Though they face bodily injury, trauma, and death, a greater soldier fights for them, just as He fights for all of us. Upon the cross, a great battle against sin, death and the devil was fought. It was a battle to the death, but Christ was victorious. All who cling to His name in faith are ever guarded against all evil in the victory of Jesus.”
Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, at 701 N. Sanderson in Hemet, will offer a Memorial Day Observance on Monday May 29 at 2 p.m. and will also dedicate its newly established Peace Pavilion. An open invitation is extended to all. Please see our ad below for details.
We close with prayer: “Heavenly Father, guard and keep our military men and women and all our Peace Officers from all harm and danger to body and soul. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”

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