Veterans Day salute to women in military

The Episcopal Church Bishop for Federal Ministries, the Rt. Rev. Jay Magness salutes women in the military on this Veteran’s Day:

In a special Veterans Day video message, Bishop Jay Magness, Episcopal Church Bishop for Federal Ministries, honors women in the military and calls for recognition of their commitment, service and sacrifice.

This Veterans Day, Bishop Magness said, “I want to salute and honor the most often unseen members of our service and veteran community – the women who serve and have served in the military.”

Noting that 11% of the US military are women, Bishop Magness addresses “the challenging personal sacrifices that women make while serving their country.”

He also points to the homeless female veteran population in this country, rising at an alarming rate. Every night, he notes, there are “over 5000 female veterans living on the street.”

Magness has also written in the Huffington Post about the need for healing of the spirit as well as the body among veterans.

If people of faith are going to engage in God’s mission of healing, forgiving and restoring, we have to know the facts. If we are serious about healing, we will soon find ourselves chest deep in repentance and penance. The service members and veterans are the unseen citizens who have been going to war, OUR WAR, for more than 10 years. I recognize that many of us have little or no sympathy with the war.

However, that does not absolve us of the need to care for these citizens who are our children, neighbors, sisters and brothers. How will we love those who have been willing to lay down their lives for us? Do we care enough about service members and about veterans to help them? Though there are some technical and organizational fixes to the solution for helping service members and veterans that may not be the fix for God’s people. God calls us to more than a simple fix. The first principle is, I believe, to take seriously Jesus’ mandate of love.

The Rt. Rev. Fred Hiltz Archbishop and Primate of Canada writes:

In this solemn hour of remembrance, we honour all those who have endured the horrors of war and given their lives in the cause of regaining and securing peace in the world.

In their memory we are gathered. Colours are dipped, a sacred silence is observed, and wreaths are laid.

We also honour all those who have returned from war — our many veterans. We honour their sacrifice as well and we thank them for their resolve in helping us to be grateful Canadians, never forgetting the great sacrifice that is the cost of the freedom we enjoy.

We recognize all our men and women in uniform today — in the Regular and the Reserve Forces. We give thanks for their calling, commitment, and courage in the wide range of operations for which they are deployed in the interests of national defence and international security. We remember their families and the sacrifices they make when their loved ones are far from home.

We pray for world leaders, that they and all others take counsel for the sake of peace within and among the nations. Pray with me that in all their deliberations they may be guided by God’s will for good will and peace among all peoples.

Today we pause to remember. May all who died in war rest in peace. May all our veterans receive the respect and care we owe them. May all in uniform who serve our country and the freedom of the whole world know of our pride in them and of our prayers for them.

Fred Hiltz

Archbishop and Primate

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