Over at RevGals, Sophia writes: Earlier this week the U.S. celebrated Veterans' Day, known in many other countries as Remembrance Day. At this time last year I was commuting to a postdoc in Canada, and I was moved by the many red poppies that showed up there on people's lapels in honor of the observance. Unlike a flag lapel pin, which to me has political connotations and implies approval of our current war, the poppies simply honor the sacrifice and dedication of those who have followed their consciences by serving--sometimes dying--in the military.This week's Friday Five invites reflection on the theme of remembrance, which is also present in the feasts of All Saints, celebrated in many liturgical churches on November 1, and All Souls--known in Latin cultures as the Day of the Dead--celebrated in some the following day.
1. Did your church have any special celebrations for All Saints/All Soul's Day?
We write names of the saints on cards that are laid in a basket on the altar, and we toll a handbell and carry bell banners whose bells were given in memory of individuals.
2. How about Veterans' Day?
Just prayers and such.
3. Did you and your family have a holiday for Veterans' Day/Remembrance Day? If so, how did you take advantage of the break?
4. Is there a veteran in your life, living or dead, whose dedication you remember and celebrate? Or perhaps a loved one presently serving in the armed forces?
My father was career military, and is still around to thank. My brother-in-law is currently preparing to come back from his second tour in Iraq, and we continue to pray for the safety of all those serving.
5. Do you have any personal rituals which help you remember and connect with loved ones who have passed on?
I love cemeteries. Not quite like SpookyRach loves cemeteries, but close. I still visit my mom's grave when I have free time in my hometown (which isn't often). Last month, for the first time, I visited the grave of the brother I never met. And my girl's ashes are still in their box and velour bag on the mantle in the living room. It doesn't feel right to scatter them, at least not now.