Thursday, September 15, 2011

Peace, Love, and Turkeys

With the tenth anniversary of September 11th this last Sunday, everyone has been sharing perspectives and memories of that fateful day.

St. Basil's Catholic Church, Overlooking Lake Michigan
I labored to determine what I could bring to the table that hasn't been said a million times already. Then on Sunday morning, Annie and I attended church at Saint Basil's Catholic Church in South Haven, Michigan. the sanctuary is a simple white worship space, with blue leaded glass marching alongside worn oak pews, all paying homage to a simple crucifix at the head of the altar.

The service was pleasant, complete with off-key cantors and snoozing grandfathers. Then the priest approached the altar to give his sermon. This portion of the mass always makes me hesitant when I visit a new parish. It's difficult to gauge the sociopolitical topics that may come out in the sermon, and on this of all days, September 11th, 2011, I was leery.

The priest allayed all my fears when he began to speak. He spoke about forgiveness. He spoke about forgiving our neighbors, forgiving our enemies, and forgiving the people who inflicted all that death, pain, and fear a decade ago.

Franklin the Turkey's official response to 9/11

So I finally realized what I can contribute to the September 11th conversation. Partially inspired by the sermon of forgiveness last Sunday, slightly spurred from the patriotic color schemes of the republican debate on Tuesday, and largely born out of the America-loving emotions that came to me while watching Rocky IV (the one with the Russians) last night, I've come up with the below image. Most of the credit goes to Franklin the Turkey.
However you remember September 11th, I ask that you do so with forgiveness and love. It is time to move forward and continue to build a peaceful world, rather than live in fear and hatred. I'm not saying that we remove all defenses against attacks from enemies, domestic and foreign alike. I am merely saying that we ought to move past the over-inflated military and defense spending, instead focusing on our education, infrastructure, and quality of life concerns in the United States.

Sorry if that got a bit soap-box. Not trying to evoke vitriol.

I'm proud to be an American. Especially when Lee Greenwood is playing.


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