This Sunday is the Sunday before Memorial Day. Generally speaking, we tend to keep secular holidays low-key affairs at Epiphany. It seems appropriate to let the church calendar take the lead at church, instead of the national one.
But this Sunday at Epiphany we will remember, as is right for us to do, those who have lost their lives in the conflicts of our nation. For some, or possibly even many of us, this will include people we know and love. We will remember in two ways. First, we will remember in our prayers. When we give thanks for those who have died “in the faith of Christ” this Sunday, we will give special thanks for those who gave their lives in military service.
Secondly, when we take communion this Sunday, we will use two very special chalices from communion sets that were carried by military chaplains to the far corners the world. One set, on loan to Epiphany, dates from at least World War II and may have been used among the Marines. The other set was used by Anglican chaplains with the United Kingdom’s military.
This Memorial Day weekend, it is right for us to be grateful for those that “gave the last full measure” for our nation. It’s also good for us to commune with them and the whole church as well, as we eat of the same bread, and, in actual fact, drink of the same cup that service members once used to offer praise and thanksgiving to God and receive Jesus their Savior in places of danger and conflict.
Rector, Church of the Epiphany