Brother Ron Barnes
Founder and Pastor

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May the Lord continue to bless and preserve you.
How to observe Memorial Day

"...gather around their sacred remains and garland the passionless mounds above them with choicest flowers of springtime....let us in this solemn presence renew our pledges to aid and assist those whom they have left among us as sacred charges upon the Nation's gratitude,--the soldier's and sailor's widow and orphan." --General John Logan, General Order No. 11,
5 May 1868

The "Memorial" in Memorial Day has been ignored by too many of us who are beneficiaries of those who have given the ultimate sacrifice. Often we do not observe the day as it should be, a day where we actively remember our ancestors, our family members, our loved ones, our neighbors, and our friends who have given the ultimate sacrifice:

a.. by visiting cemeteries and placing flags or flowers on the graves of our
fallen heroes.

b.. by visiting memorials.

c.. by flying the U.S. Flag at half-staff until noon.

d.. by flying the 'POW/MIA Flag' as well (Section 1082 of the 1998 Defense
Authorization Act).

e.. by participating in a "National Moment of Remembrance": at 3 p.m. to pause and think upon the true meaning of the day, and for Taps to be played.

f.. by renewing a pledge to aid the widows, widowers, and orphans of our
falled dead, and to aid the disabled veterans.

Also, please consider adding your voice in support of the efforts to restore the
traditional day of observance of Memorial Day back to May 30th (instead of "the last Monday in May"). This would help greatly to return the solemn meaning back to the day, and to help return minds and hearts to think upon the ultimate sacrifices made by those in service to our country.

Just one day out of the year to honor our loved ones, our ancestors, our friends who died in conflicts and wars -- not to honor war, but those that died in those conflicts and wars. I receive many emails from people expressing their thanks for those who have served and gave the ultimate sacrifice for this country. The following, received sums up all the emails I have received very elegantly, and is true to the original spirit and meaning of Memorial Day.

"This weekend I am going to do something different. I am going to buy some
carnations each day and go to one of the nearby cemetaries and walk through the sections for soldiers. When I find a grave that has no flowers, I'll leave one and say a prayer for the family of that person, who for some reason could not bring their soldier flowers. I will pray for our country and all who serve or have served. For their families, who also serve by losing precious days, weeks and months spent with their loved ones who are off serving, preserving peace and the freedom we have in this country. I'll pray for the families who paid the ultimate price, who's loved ones died, or were taken captive and never returned.

I'll pray for anyone who may still be held in captivity and thinks perhaps they
are forgotten. I do NOT forget.

I'll say a prayer for every person on the Internet who takes a moment from
their time to come to sites like yours and be reminded of what this holiday
really means. And I'll say a prayer of thanks and ask God's richest blessings on you.

Thank you again.... and God bless!

In fact, wonderful people in other nations sometimes show more of the true
spirit and mission of the U.S. Memorial Day than we do here. For example

"Hi,
In 1999 I laid flowers at the grave of a young U.S. fighter pilot who was KIA
in my village in 1945. In the Netherlands I know of schools 'adopting' graves of Allied servicemen, keeping those graves in excellent condition ! Does anybody know of adopting graves in the U.S. by schools ?

Let us take a few moments this Memorial Day to reflect on the meaning of the day, to observe the day and be mindful of the sacrifices of others before we go and enjoy the freedoms they bought for us.