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Saturday, August 06, 2005

The Day the World Changed

We were discussing the Feast Days of Leviticus in my Bible study this morning. Father Mark held up a newspaper headline on the solemn remembrance occuring in Japan today as an illustration of the necessity of keeping certain days holy,lest we forget.

An elderly man named Dick, still very active in the Church, raised his hand, and said, "There wasn't anything left standing, only the chimneys, and the American safes." Father Mark said with some astonishment, "You were there?!?!?" as a hush fell over the room.

Dick was on a troop ship in the Pacific, preparing for the invasion of the Japanese homelands, sixty years ago today. Had the bomb not been dropped, I wonder if Dick would have been sitting there on a quiet Saturday morning. I wonder if he would have been one of the estimated 200,000 Allied casualties of that invasion. I wonder how many of us would have been sitting there, if a haberdasher from Missouri hadn't had the courage to take the lesser of two evils.

I didn't get a chance this morning to thank Dick for his service. But tomorrow's Sunday, and Dick is alway in Church, a far more peaceful place than where he was sixty years ago today.

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