Today’s Word from Pastor Jim…

Felicia and I visited the beaches of Normandy last October. The Sunday before leaving Whidbey Island we had talked with Web Halvorsen who, 77 years earlier, had stormed Utah Beach as a part of the greatest invasionary force in human history. It was humbling to walk the beaches, to visit the museums, to read the accounts of brave soldiers and ordinary citizens, to stand on the bluffs of Pointe du Hoc, and to silently stroll through rows of white crosses.

On October 28th we found ourselves on the Greek island of Mykonos. It was a national holiday known as “Ohi Day.” Literally, it is “No Day.” On October 28, 1940, at 3:00 am, the Axis powers demanded Greek submission. The words of the Italian ambassador were threatening and clear: the Greek government would either allow the armies of Italy and Germany to occupy Greece or there would be war.

The Greek Prime Minister replied, “Then it’s war.” He said “Ohi.” He said, “No.” Two hours later, Greece was under attack.
On October 28, 2021 on the Island of Mykonos, we watched as every citizen took to the streets. Flags were held high as school children marched, bands played, and the bravery of a different time was remembered and celebrated.

On Monday, May 30th, Felicia and I will be attending the Memorial Day observance at the Clinton Cemetery next to Saint Peter’s Church. The bell will toll, the dead will be remembered, the speaker will be our own Andy Hough, who served in the United States Army for 22 years. This holiday is not about fishing, picnics, golfing, and boating. Memorial Day invites us to remember the sacrifices that were made that we might fish, picnic, golf, worship, and boat in freedom.

May we have an increased awareness this year of our indebtedness.

One day closer,

Pastor Jim