Monday marked the 100th anniversary of the Armistice, which was signed in the “11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month” of 1918. This has since been known as Armistice Day. The armistice signing ended the actual fighting but it took six more months for the peace treaty, the Treaty of Versailles, to be signed.
The eleventh hour is a phrase that we know to mean “at the last possible moment or opportunity.” Interestingly the phrase was also used in the Bible, where Jesus tells the parable of the laborers in the vineyard (Matthew 20:1-16). Some biblical theologians interpret the use of the eleventh hour to mean the last hour before darkness, since in Jesus’ time the hours were counted from dawn until dusk. The 12th hour would be dark therefore the 11th hour would be the final hour before dark.
As are result of persistent campaigning from major U.S. veteran organizations, Armistice Day was renamed Veterans Day in 1954 and is an official U.S. public holiday observed annually on Nov. 11 to honor military veterans that served in the U.S. Armed Forces.
Our American history has been filled with conflict and harmony, war and peace, disease and health, strife and blessing, heartache and happiness, poverty, and prosperity. It is important that we remember and reflect upon the blessings we inherited from the sacrifices made by our forefathers. This is why I’m writing about the centennial. Although I wish it was not after the fact, I know it’s better to acknowledge it late than never.
Next week is Thanksgiving week, “the forgotten holiday,” or at least the fastest changing holiday. Many women tell me how their children prefer pizza or something quick in lieu of the traditional Thanksgiving meal. I can see the youth’s viewpoint because the traditional meal had always been food enough to feed a family for two-three days. But if we abandon tradition where does it stop?
Tradition is a major part of our culture, giving structure and substance to our families and society. Tradition connects our past with our present life giving us roots and keeping us free from ignorance of ourselves, our heritage and the sacrifices that were made to afford us the liberties we enjoy. Tradition teaches and affirms our values regarding our faith, patriotism, personal responsibility, moral fiber, work ethic, concern for others and community, etc. Tradition brings families and friends together and strengthens their relationships. Tradition offers us an opportunity to reflect, give thanks, reunite with those who had been closest to us, create lasting memories and put others’ wishes ahead of ours.
When I was in my early 30s my father called inviting me to the house for a Father’s Day cook out, of course I gladly went, but I remember my first thoughts upon hearing his invitation were how vain of him to plan his own Father’s Day celebration. Now I understand so much clearer. He wanted his family together. He wanted to be with those he loved most and he wanted to create memories for us all. Although he has been gone more than 25 years, those family holidays are a joy forever etched in my memory.
I hope each of you holds on to your family tradition, even if it seems torturous at the time, and from time to time it will because that’s how family is. Just keep telling yourself that it is worth it and it will be worth it long after you are gone. In fact I can accurately predict those memories will ultimately become priceless. Happy Thanksgiving!
Tuesday, Nov. 20th at 7 p.m. will be the Community Combined Thanksgiving Service hosted by Versailles Christian Church. Pastor Kelly Moody of Living Waters Church will be the featured speaker.
Saturday, Dec. 1 at 7 p.m. is the Ansonia Christmas Tractor Parade. To include your tractor you must register by calling 937-417-7961 or email [email protected]
Happy 90th birthday to Shorty Keller also birthday wishes to Missy Voisard, Brett Pulfer, Deb Pohl, Brooke Timmerman, Bryan Bartram, Paige Gehret, Carmen Hartzell, Phyliss Davis, David Fine, Alma Kissinger, Cindy Shadoan, Chastity Rinderle, Deb Stewart, Amanda Milbourne, Scott Monnin, Denise Ruhenkamp, Barb Marshal, Toni Schafer, Shawn Daugherty, Shirley Goldschmidt, Cole Ausborn, Shirley Eiting, Pam Groff, Rachel Schmitmeyer, Pat Dieringer, Monica Knapke, Tom Petitjean, Karen Kelch, Gene Epperly, Shirley Slyder, Hannah Cornett, Brent Pulfer, Brooke Timmerman, Lilli Cusick, Katrina Hoening, Paul Heft, Carmen Hartzell, and Phyllis Davis as their special day approaches. Anniversary wishes to Erin and Keith Horst (4), Mallory and Ben Schmitmeyer (11), Donna and Russ Francis (22), Lisa and Mark Barga (25), Shirley and D. Johns, Susan and Doyle Derr (27), Gary and Pamela Goettemoeller (27), Cindy and Ralph Dapore (29), Brenda and Tom Dirksen (29), Eileen and Jim Prenger (36), Cindy and Sherman Lewis (38), Sue and Jim Christian (45), Karen and John Davis, Mary Jean and Paul Meyer (52) and Armistice Day (100).
Congratulations to the State Champion VHS Girls Volleyball Team for their tenacity and success. Congratulations to all the school clubs, bands and sports programs for always and forever excelling.
Best wishes to Therese Pohlman on her retirement after 34 years with the Versailles Health Care Center. And a personal thank you to the “Little Birdies” who keep me in the know on birthdays, anniversaries and events.
Please give your supportive and healing prayers for the many who are dealing with any of life’s countless challenges, and especially for Ginger Magoto (wrist), Janice Berger, Violet Bensman, Robert Loy, Lewis Stahl, Marge Paulus, Bernie Frantz, Karen Borchers, Paul Shimp, Beverly Burt, Jackson Winner, Jerilyn Monnin, Fr. John White, Kellie Gehret, Shirley Tapp, Becca Pohl Liette, Jane Meier, Dean Kreitzer, Jim Kelch, Scarlet Unrast, Jenni Meyer, John Brandt, Donna Apple, Alice Luthman, Michelle Sherman, Miriam Harman, Patricia Borchers, Bob Miller, Iona Gariety, Loretta Bey, Steve Bey, Aiden Myers, Angie Keiser, Paul Dapore, Rose Mary Paulus, Cyril Frantz, Carol Laub, Peggy Borgerding, Earl Gigandet, Ruth Wirrig, Marge Prakel, Mary Batty, Norma Magoto, Betty Kremer, Virginia Smith, Mary Huelskamp, Anabelle Subler, Lois Youngker, Barb Goubeaux, Eileen Rahm, Samantha Smith and those not mentioned by name who are recuperating, hospitalized, homebound and/or in need of our prayers.
Heartfelt sympathy is extended to the family and friends of Jerry Paulus (85), Dave Magoto (90), and Rosalyn Berger (90), also remembering and keeping in our hearts the lives of Joe Oldiges, Robert Bruns, Tonya Moore, Joe Keller, Loretta Stocker, Paul Cordonnier, Andrew Moeller, Karen Coverstone, Mary Davidson, Richard Michael, Marybel Weaver, Alice Broering, Don Oswalt, Dale Simon, Marjorie Rethman, Roger Wackler, Tom Siegel, Helen Bruner Brown, Margaret Bixler, Carol Bundschuh, Joe Vencill, Norman Gigandet, Ruth Marshal and all those not mentioned by name as the anniversary of their recently passing nears.
“Tradition is not to preserve the ashes, but to pass on the flame.” ~Gustav Mahler
“Armistice Day was established Lest We Forget, the eleventh hour of the eleventh day in the eleventh month, so how did renaming the day Veteran’s Day help accomplish the memory?” ~C. Edwards
“There is always, always, always something to be thankful for.” ~Unknown