Tag Archives: veterans

an angel figurine

Bringing good news

Luke chapter 2, New Living Translation 

The Shepherds and Angels

That night there were shepherds staying in the fields nearby, guarding their flocks of sheep.
Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terrified, but the angel reassured them.
shepherds raising arms to the sky

Shepherds drawing by Bill Hart

“Don’t be afraid!” he said.                                         the letters JOY painted on a white board
“I bring you good news that will bring    
great joy to all people.”

 

 

 

 

The late Bill Hart was a professional artist. He served in the United States Army during World War II and was part of the force which invaded  and liberated  France in 1944. You can read Bill’s story at this link. 

 

These verses from Luke in the Bible are sung in Handel’s Messiah musical. We usually associate  Messiah with Christmas, but Handel intended it to be performed at Easter.
 “Handel got the lyrics from a preacher named Charles Jennens, who wrote out the whole piece as a collage of Bible verses designed to tell a story about the Messiah.”
quoted from wheatwilliams.com
According to the Bible, Luke was a physician. George Handel’s father, Georg, was a barber-surgeon.
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"faith, hope, love"

Weekend Words-

sharing words of faith, hope, and love

(1Corinthians 13:13)

 

 

 

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“though poppies grow in Flanders fields”

 

In the United States,  the last Monday in May is Memorial Day, but it’s now become a  “holiday” weekend. The Friday of Memorial Day weekend is now observed as  National Poppy Day

In the early 1920s the American Legion Auxiliary adopted the poppy as the American Legion Family’s memorial flower. Today, it remains an iconic symbol of honor for the sacrifice of our veterans. ALA members distribute millions of poppies annually across the country in exchange for donations that go directly to assist disabled and hospitalized veterans in our communities.

 

 

armed forces emblems over a field of poppies

 

 

Why poppies?

I love the story of the poppies because it has a medical connection.

In the battlefields of Belgium during World War I, poppies grew wild amid the ravages of war. The overturned soils of battle enabled the poppy seeds to be covered, allowing them to grow and forever serve as a reminder of the bloodshed of war.

Out of this conflict came a poem, from which also came the association with poppies .

The now famous poem, In Flanders Fields, was written by a Canadian physician, Lt. Col. John McCrae.

 

Dr.McCrae was an English and math teacher, as well as a poet, before he attended medical school. He moved to England and was practicing there when World War I broke out, and he was called to serve as a brigade-surgeon.

I suspect that as a physician, he was deeply  pained by  treating the wounded, and the loss of those he could not save.

“In April 1915, McCrae was stationed in the trenches near Ypres, Belgium, in an area known as Flanders, during the bloody Second Battle of Ypres.

In the midst of the tragic warfare, McCrae’s friend, twenty-two-year-old Lieutenant Alexis Helmer, was killed by artillery fire and buried in a makeshift grave.

The following day, McCrae, after seeing the field of makeshift graves blooming with wild poppies, wrote his famous poem “In Flanders Field,” which would be the second to last poem he would ever write.”

(from John McCrae at poets.org)

 

 

 

 

 

In Flanders Fields

Dr. John McCrae, 18721918

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row, 
That mark our place, and in the sky, 
The larks, still bravely singing, fly, 
Scarce heard amid the guns below. 

We are the dead; short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow, 
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields. 

Take up our quarrel with the foe! 
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high! 
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

This poem is in the public domain.

 

The poppy is the official state flower of California.  Read 5 more

interesting facts about poppies. 

 

 

 

Welcome Home Heroes- military sign

Thanks to the support of generous donors like you, The American Legion can continue to provide much-needed assistance to our veterans, service members and their families.

 

 

 

You can  help deserving veterans by donating  at this link.

The American Legion 

Advent

Advent Words from Luke

Luke chapter 2, New Living Translation 

The Shepherds and Angels
8That night there were shepherds staying in the fields nearby, guarding their flocks of sheep.
9Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared among them, and the radiance of the Lord’s glory surrounded them. They were terrified,
10but the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said.
“I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people.
11The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David!
12And you will recognize him by this sign: You will find a baby wrapped snugly in strips of cloth, lying in a manger.”
13Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others—the armies of heaven—praising God and saying,
14“Glory to God in highest heaven,
and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.”
15When the angels had returned to heaven, the shepherds said to each other, “Let’s go to Bethlehem! Let’s see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”
shepherds raising arms to the sky

Shepherds drawing by Bill Hart

 

The late Bill Hart was a professional artist. He served in the United States Army during World War II and was part of the force which invaded  and liberated  France in 1944. You can read Bill’s story at this link. 

 

 

The season of Advent, which comes comes from the Latin word adventus meaning “coming” or “visit,” begins four Sundays before Christmas and ends on Christmas Eve. Advent is the beginning of the liturgical year for Christians. [Liturgical — from liturgy, which means the forms and functions of public worship.]

Please follow this blog every week for more Advent Words as we Christians observe this solemn season.