today's readings are 2 John 4-9; Psalm 119 and Lk. 17: 26-37
A day to remember. We remembered on All Sous' Day. We will remember on Saturday the 19th for our parish's Annual Memorial Mass. Throughout November we remember our loved ones who have died with our parish's Books of Life and our All Souls' envelopes. We remember all who died.
In Canada today, and in many countries throughout the world, we remember our war dead. Those who served our country in our Armed Forces, and especially those who paid the ultimate price. As Canadians, we wear poppies as a sign of our remembering them. We thank them for their service, and we pray for their eternal rest.
Every war comes with a message that should make us human beings hang our heads in shame, a message perhaps best summarized by a scene from the movie Troy, in which the King of Ithaca says the following words to Achilles: "War is old men talking and young men dying". And not just young men dying, but the old and the young, women and men, soldiers and civilians alike, as we once again painfully witness in Ukraine. The pain, the horror, the shame. How is it that we are still capable, after all these centuries, of such evil? How is it that one country can think that it is free to invade another, especially on the basis of such false pretenses as Russia's invasion of Ukraine? And sadly, one can come up with so many more instances in both recent and ancient history.
It is rather ironic that on this day the Church celebrates the feast of St. Martin of Tours, a fourth-century Roman soldier who underwent a deep conversion after an encounter with a poor beggar, with whom he shared his cloak, only to discover later that it was Jesus.
Martin left the army and eventually became a bishop of Tours in France. His faith enabled him to read the signs of the times, let go of one life of war and welcome a new life of peace in Christ.
On this day, when we pray another message of Remembrance Day, "Never again!", we prayerfully ask for Martin's intercessions for true and just peace in our world.