A prayer for Memorial Day

A prayer for Memorial Day from my seminary classmate Thomas Burke, who is a Marine Corps combat veteran and the Associate Pastor at the Norfield Congregational Church in Weston.
-Pastor Katrina

Memorial Day Prayer:

At this time I invite you all to take a deep and spirit filled breath. To find the ground beneath your feet and to join your hearts with mine in prayer.

Creator, we come to you this day in deep gratitude for the men and women who have served this great nation.

From the sands of Fallujah, to the canals of the Helmand Province, to the shores of Tripoli, we have fought for honor, courage, and commitment, and for our beloved country since the beginning of this great land.

Lord we ask for your swift hand of mercy to those of us still suffering from the invisible wounds of war. Wipe away all guilt and fill us with your grace so that we know our sins are forgiven and our sacrifice was not in vain.

We ask that you provide comfort to those who lost everything. We await the day where we can stand on the battlefield with our enemies and sing songs of reconciliation, but until that day we ask that your hand guide our strong swift sword towards justice and humility.

Let us be a beacon of freedom to those struggling for peace rather than a strong rod that punishes those who yearn to be free. Allow us a discerning wisdom so that we can not only prevail on the battlefield, but also in every other place where injustice is experienced.

God above all nations, we come to you in remembrance of those who throughout history have sacrificed their lives in service to this country. We remember in solemn gratitude those who put themselves in places of risk and danger in service to something greater than themselves. We ask that you perfect in us your ways of peace and justice, that the ways of war will end and that all people may live in harmony as you intend. We ask for your forgiveness for the times our country has been led into war for reasons other than your vision of justice.

This year we celebrate the end of US involvement in combat in Afghanistan, we pray that next year we see an end to all US involvement in combat.

We ask this in the light of the triumphant human spirit you created.


Thomas Burke Jr.