Lest we forget. We spoke these words yesterday at the Mass for Anzac Day or at a dawn service or any of the other celebrations where the playing of the Last Post, the recitation of the Oath and the playing of Reveille held a place of prominence. What we remember is a military engagement that did not achieve the objective the generals hoped for. The loss of life for those attacking and those defending was enormous. The conditions the soldiers endured for the months the fighting continued were appalling. What we are called not to forget is the spirit of the Australians and New Zealanders and their willingness to give their lives for a cause they believed in. We celebrate so as not to forget what they did and the sense of identity as a nation that was strengthened by this battle.
That battle took place one hundred years ago and still we remember. Two thousand years ago one man died and still we gather lest we forget. These gatherings are weekly not annual events. We gather on the first day of each week and call to mind not just the death of Jesus, to all outward appearances an unmitigated disaster, but more importantly the victory of Easter Sunday when the casualty of Good Friday cast death and its lifelessness aside and walked back on to the world stage alive in a completely new way.
Those who followed Him felt a new spirit of liveliness in themselves and shared it with others who professed belief in Jesus as the revelation of the Father and the love the Father has for all. Their Sunday celebrations had a memory element but more than that were a time when the death-free, alive Christ was with them in and through the sacrament He left them: do this in memory of me. The flock gathered to the call of the shepherd who was good in His care of them and who had given His life for them.
The Anzacs and all those who have given their lives so that others can live a good and rich life may not have had any faith they would call religious, but in laying down their lives lived the dynamic by which Jesus did and so would find His words ringing in their ears: well done good and faithful servants.
Fr Adrian Farrelly
|Jun 5, 2015||4th Sunday of Easter 26.04.2015||Listen||Download|