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Rev. Carl H. Kemp, Pastor

Remembering Your Loved One’s

May 28, 2006

 

Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day of remembrance for those who have died in our nation's service. There are many stories as to its actual beginnings, with over two dozen cities and towns laying claim to being the birthplace of Memorial Day. There is also evidence that organized women's groups in the South were decorating graves before the end of the Civil War: a hymn published in 1867, "Kneel Where Our Loves are Sleeping" by Nella L. Sweet carried the dedication "To The Ladies of the South who are Decorating the Graves of the Confederate Dead" (Source: Duke University's Historic American Sheet Music, 1850-1920). While Waterloo N.Y. was officially declared the birthplace of Memorial Day by President Lyndon Johnson in May 1966, it's difficult to prove conclusively the origins of the day. It is more likely that it had many separate beginnings; each of those towns and every planned or spontaneous gathering of people to honor the war dead in the 1860's tapped into the general human need to honor our dead, each contributed honorably to the growing movement that culminated in Gen Logan giving his official proclamation in 1868. It is not important who was the very first, what is important is that Memorial Day was established. Memorial Day is not about division. It is about reconciliation; it is about coming together to honor those who gave their all.

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General John A. Logan
Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division, [LC-B8172- 6403 DLC (b&w film neg.)]

 

 

Memorial Day was officially proclaimed on 5 May 1868 by General John Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, in his General Order No. 11, and was first observed on 30 May 1868, when flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery. The first state to officially recognize the holiday was New York in 1873. By 1890 it was recognized by all of the northern states. The South refused to acknowledge the day, honoring their dead on separate days until after World War I (when the holiday changed from honoring just those who died fighting in the Civil War to honoring Americans who died fighting in any war). It is now celebrated in almost every State on the last Monday in May (passed by Congress with the National Holiday Act of 1971 (P.L. 90 - 363) to ensure a three day weekend for Federal holidays), though several southern states have an additional separate day for honoring the Confederate war dead: January 19 in Texas, April 26 in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and Mississippi; May 10 in South Carolina; and June 3 (Jefferson Davis' birthday) in Louisiana and Tennessee.

 

 

 

John 19: 28—30

(John 19:28 NIV)  Later, knowing that all was now completed, and so that the Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, "I am thirsty." 

(John 19:29 NIV)  A jar of wine vinegar was there, so they soaked a sponge in it, put the sponge on a stalk of the hyssop plant, and lifted it to Jesus' lips. 

(John 19:30 NIV)  When he had received the drink, Jesus said, "It is finished." With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit. 

            When Christ died it was not the end but the beginning. 

Because He lives we to can live a glories life.  

(Matthew 28:10 NIV)  Then Jesus said to them, "Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me." 

(Mark 16:9 NIV)  When Jesus rose early on the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had driven seven demons. 

(Luke 24:46 NIV)  He told them, "This is what is written: The Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, 

(Luke 24:47 NIV)  and repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 

(Luke 24:48 NIV)  You are witnesses of these things. 

(Luke 24:49 NIV)  I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high." 

 

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