image by Nankai

Today in Australia and New Zealand it is ANZAC Day – the day that is our national remembrance day, a day to remember those who served in the armed forces, and the wars they fought in.

Oh Jesus, Prince of Peace
Today we remember.
We remember not to glorify or sentimentalise war,
but knowing that war is bloody,
tangled up in our hopes and our fears,
leaving scars on people and places.

We remember the soldiers:
those who fought,
those who died,
and those who mourned, who still mourn, their passing.

We remember the medics, the nurses, the drivers.
The code-breakers, translators and chaplains.

We remember those who would not go to war,
showing their courage in conscientious objection.

We remember all those who live with the consequences of war.

We remember because we are the people who worship you:
the Prince of Peace.

You call us to work and pray for that day
when the lion and lamb lie down together,
when swords are beaten into ploughshares
when we do not know war anymore.

That day is not yet,
and so in our words and in our weeping
hear our prayer.

Come, Christ Jesus come.

Image description: Artificial poppies left on the Waitati cenotaph on Anzac Day 2009. Most are poppies of the Royal New Zealand Returned and Services Association Inc; in the centre is a white one promoted by ‘White Poppies for Peace’, a New Zealand peace group.


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