Memorial Day and the 5 Principles
Jennifer Gates, Youth and Family Ministry Director
“The soldier above all others prays for peace, for it is the soldier who must suffer and bear the deepest wounds and scars of war.” – Douglas MacArthur
At Unity Church of San Antonio, we affirm that the teachings of Jesus Christ can be lived every day. Further, we believe that each person is a unique expression of God, that each person is sacred, and each person is worthy. Unity emphasizes the creative power of thought in people’s experience, and encourages taking personal responsibility to choose life-affirming thoughts, words, and actions. As students of Unity Principles, we also hold that our teachings are used to their best and highest purpose when we can practice them in our daily lives.
Topics such as conflict, war, and death can be difficult for all of us to understand and are an especially delicate topics to explain and discuss with children and teens. This week, as our country celebrates Memorial Day – a day of remembrance for our country’s soldiers who have lost their lives in battle – our Youth Ministry Team will be reflecting upon the way we can frame the conflicts and tragedies of war with our unwavering Principles.
Memorial Day is more than just a day off from work or school, an excellent occasion for a backyard barbecue or a chance to travel. Those things do speak to the holiday’s true spirit. But above all else, Memorial Day honors Americans who have died in service to their country. Celebrations that are held on this day speak to our privilege to enjoy the many freedoms that American servicemen and women have perished protecting.
Our youngest YM members will delve into the topics of strengths and struggles and what it means to be a helper and accept help. Teens will spend time reading and discussing quotations from soldiers and peacemakers about topics such as duty, patriotism, and heroism and then describing how Unity’s 5 Principles hold true in all situations.
For further discussion at home, here is one possible way of expressing our 5 Principles as you celebrate Memorial Day:
Strength and struggle are part of what makes us human, there is no judgment. God IS in all situations.
All that we are is part of God. Everyone around us is also part of God and deserving of our help and friendship.
My choices help make my life more peaceful.
Connection with others makes our world a more peaceful place. I can also connect with my Higher Power through Meditation & Affirmative Prayer
By helping others and by be willing to accept help, I am putting my beliefs into action!