Veterans Day Reflections: a Unitarian Universalist Perspective
Today is Veterans Day. Our country is at war, and last week, we experienced an unusual and very tragic shooting spree at one of our military bases.
For some, Veterans Day can be difficult enough without the weight of such events. But the day is before us. It is asking something of us, regardless of who we are. The day asks us about our military service or the service of family or friends, recent or distant. It asks us what we know about service in the midst of conflict… within our history, within our politics, and within our human condition. In short, it asks us to reflect on who we are in contexts which may be unfamiliar or uncomfortable.
Veterans Day is a time for us to intentionally recognize and honor those who have served our country in times of peace and of war. It is a time for us to peer through the haze of complex historical, political, and social issues into the heart of the veteran’s human spirit. It is a time for us to recognize their courage and resoluteness in the face of incredible adversity. And it is a time to honor the sacrifices they and their families have made on behalf of this nation.
As we celebrate, contemplate, and grieve during this Veterans Day, let us recall the commitments and the sacrifices of our veterans, especially the fallen. Let us think on what we might do to build a future worthy of their sacrifice. And for all of our deployed service men and women, let us be part of the community of love and support that surrounds them on their return. They will need a circle wide enough to hold their stories and brave and gentle enough to walk with them through a difficult transition.
In faith and service,
Seanan R. Holland
Lt. Col. United States Marine Corps Reserve
Candidate for the Unitarian Universalist (UU) Ministry
Ministerial Intern, Church of the Larger Fellowship