Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Jennifer Hartline

5/26/2014 (2 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

A safe and solemn Memorial Day to all. May God continue to bless the United States of America

Thank you, to every man and woman who has fought and is currently fighting for our homeland.  Thank you for doing everything within your power to make sure I and my children can sleep safely tonight.  I love and appreciate you and I pray God's blessing on you and your families.  Godspeed, and come home soon.

Thank you, to every man and woman who has fought and is currently fighting for our homeland.  Thank you for doing everything within your power to make sure I and my children can sleep safely tonight.  I love and appreciate you and I pray God's blessing on you and your families.  Godspeed, and come home soon.

Thank you, to every man and woman who has fought and is currently fighting for our homeland. Thank you for doing everything within your power to make sure I and my children can sleep safely tonight. I love and appreciate you and I pray God's blessing on you and your families. Godspeed, and come home soon.

Highlights

By Jennifer Hartline

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

5/26/2014 (2 months ago)

Published in U.S.

Keywords: Veterans, memorial day, heroes, soldiers, war, courage, Jennifer Hartline


WASHINGTON, DC (Catholic Online) - I understand that it can be difficult for civilian families to relate to military folks and the military lifestyle.  It's hard to really grasp the emotional highs and lows, and the toll that military life takes on a family unless you've lived it.  Through no fault of their own, many civilians just don't get it, and how could they?

Until I lived through my husband's weeks of field training exercises, I didn't understand what it was like to be a temporary single mom, with him popping in and out of home life like a frequent visitor and having to get used to him being around again.

Until I lived through his deployment to Iraq in 2003, I could have never comprehended the heartache of saying goodbye to him in our doorway at 0300, closing the door behind him, and thinking to myself, "That might have been the last time I'll ever see him.  That just might have been it." 

Do you know how hard it was not to fling open the door and run after him?  I had two small children sound asleep in their bedroom, and their Mom sat up on the couch crying til dawn, begging the angels to keep my beloved safe.  I didn't know what I was supposed to do next.  Turned out, it was make breakfast.

Normal stuff of normal life fills the days of loved ones waiting at home for their soldiers who are "in theater" - that means in the war zone, in harm's way, in danger.  Not at home with you.  Yet every moment there lingers a fear in your heart, and a small lump in your throat.
 
Every day the prayer is the same, "Please Father, keep him safe today and bring him back home to me."  Every day you smile in front of your children whether you feel like smiling or not.  Whether you're worried or lonely or tired, you do your best to keep things "normal" for your kids.  And you remember that whatever you're going through is peanuts compared to what your soldier is enduring.

So while there are many things I don't expect the civilian world to understand, I do expect them to REMEMBER the sacrifices made by our uniformed heroes, the ones who go to the worst places on earth and do the most difficult and unpleasant jobs in order to protect us back here at home. 

Most of them are like my husband, in that they don't want public applause or thanks and they don't really need medals.  They truly appreciate the person who shakes their hand, looks them in the eye, and says, "Thank you for your service.  I'm glad you're home safe and sound."

They truly appreciate the people who look after their families while they are away.  The guy who mows the lawn for a soldier's wife; the woman who helps out with childcare once in a while or brings dinner over; the person in the housing office who takes pity and makes sure a repair gets done pronto. 

And in my case, the guy in the Rear Detachment (the soldiers in the unit who stay behind to help coordinate things) who comes over to this panic-stricken wife's house to seek out and destroy the red wasp flying around in the kitchen.  Really.  I was *this close* to needing a tranquilizer.

My husband will spend this Memorial Day quietly remembering the soldier whose body he escorted home to his family in Georgia the year we were married -- the one who died in a freak accident during a typical field exercise.  He knew it could have just as easily been him.  So did I.
 
He'll remember the soldiers who died in Iraq under his command, as well as the ones who were permanently injured.  He'll remember the nearly two dozen friends he's lost; the ones who did not come home alive.  Perhaps he'll wonder again why he did come home alive.

I'll spend Memorial Day thinking of all of them, and thanking God for their sacrifice and praying for their eternal rest.  I'll thank God again, for the millionth time that my beloved came back to me safe and sound.  And I'll pray for every hero currently in theater and beg Heaven's angels to stand watch and keep them safe.

And I'll remember my friend, Karin, who became a widow at age 34 with two little girls, and I'll remember how many, many families have lost the one they loved.  I hope they know, this day, that their hero is not forgotten.

My husband will never toot his own horn or draw attention to the sacrifices he's made and the sadness and loss he's endured as a soldier for his country, but I will.  We need some of the Brave here at home, too, and I hope there are more than a few left.

Thank you, to every man and woman who has fought and is currently fighting for our homeland.  Thank you for doing everything within your power to make sure I and my children can sleep safely tonight.  I love and appreciate you and I pray God's blessing on you and your families.  Godspeed, and come home soon.

Thank you, my darling, for being who you are -- a quietly brave and faithful hero.  I love you so much, and I'm so proud to be your wife.

A safe and solemn Memorial Day to all.  May God continue to bless the United States of America.We need to honor those who honor our nation with their heroic sacrifice.

-----

Jennifer Hartline is a grateful Catholic, a proud Army wife and mother of four precious children (one in Heaven).  She is a contributing writer for Catholic Online.  Visit her at My Chocolate Heart.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for July 2014
Sports:
That sports may always be occasions of human fraternity and growth.
Lay Missionaries: That the Holy Spirit may support the work of the laity who proclaim the Gospel in the poorest countries.



Comments


More U.S.

Archbishop Chaput Speaks at the Napa Institute Conference on Pope Francis and Economic Justice

Image of Archbishop Charles J. Chaput is one of the preeminent Churchmen of our age. He offers a prophetic voice for this important time. He not only grasps and articulates Catholic Social Doctrine well, he also understands the real treasure we have been given in this Pope who took the name Francis. I believe that his insights into Pope Francis need to be read by as many people as possible.

By Catholic Online

In matters of economic justice, Francis' concerns are the same as Benedict's and John Paul II's and Pius XI's and Leo XIII's. He understands economic matters through the lens of Church teaching in the Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church. Like his ... continue reading


Thousands of Christians Flee Under Death Threat From Tyrannical Caliph and ISIS Jihadists Watch

Image of (Pictured: Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, or Caliph Ibrahim) At first, Christians were ordered to gather in a central place to receive the directive from the self appointed Caliph. Understandably, given the track record of this maniacal tyrant, few did. So, the text of the statement was issued as a formal declaration to all Christians - We offer them three choices: Islam; the dhimma contract - involving payment of Jizya; if they refuse this they will have nothing but the sword.

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

By now, everyone who is in anyway concerned about what is happening to Christians in Iraq has heard the horrific news. The madman who claims to be a descendant of Mohammed, Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi - who in his delusion and grandiosity has taken to calling himself ... continue reading


Bridget of Sweden, Marriage and Family, and the Need for Canonized Married Saints Watch

Image of St Bridget of Sweden, her husband Ulf, and all the modern Popes call Christian married couples to become the 'Sweet and Smiling Face of the Church' in this age. This is an age which is desperately in need of all kinds of saints. I suggest we particularly need examples of married, canonized Saints. That is precisely because this is an age where faithful marriage is now counter-cultural. We need examples of men and women who not only embraced it in Christ, but lived it as a but a path to heroic virtue.

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

The clear teaching of the Bible, the Christian tradition and the re-emphasis of the last Council in the Catholic Church, the Second Vatican Council, make clear - we are ALL called to holiness in life. That  is what the Catholic Church regularly refers to as ... continue reading


Deacon Keith Fournier: The Courage of the Catholic Bishops, Religious Liberty, Hobby Lobby and ENDA Watch

Image of Deacon Keith Fournier is Founder and Chairman of Common Good Foundation and Common Good Alliance. A married Roman Catholic Deacon of the Diocese of Richmond, Virginia, he and his wife Laurine have five grown children and six grandchildren, He serves as the Director of Adult Faith Formation at St. Stephen, Martyr Parish in Chesapeake, VA. He is also a human rights lawyer and public policy advocate. Deacon Fournier is a graduate of the Franciscan University of Steubenville (Theology and Philosophy, BA), the John Paul II Institute of the Lateran University (Theology of Marriage and Family, MTS), and the University of Pittsburgh School of Law (JD). He has completed requirements for the PhD in Moral Theology at the Catholic University of America and is writing the PhD dissertation on the teaching of St. John Paul II.

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

The Catholic Bishops are doing an excellent job standing up for Religious liberty as a fundamental human right. One of my growing concerns is that many Catholics do not even read what they are saying. Sadly, in a propagandized media where sound bites substitute ... continue reading


Obama demands that illegals be allowed to enter U.S. Watch

Image of Tens of thousands of illegal, unaccompanied minors have flooded into the United States since 2014 began, often escaping violence in war torn Central American countries.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

President Barack Obama's administration is considering whether or not it will allow hundreds of minors and young adults from Honduras and other war-torn Central American states to enter into the United States illegally and without crossing into the country ... continue reading


Are you ready for the next dust bowl? California is! Watch

Image of A new study suggests that the Colorado River Basin is rapidly running out of water, which may be disastrous for the seven states it supplies.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

According to a report published by the American space agency and the University of California, the water crisis that is punishing the southwestern United States is likely to worsen. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The report found that the prime source of water ... continue reading


PLAGUE OF BIBLICAL PROPORTIONS: Mayflies descend on Wisconsin Watch

Image of When summer arrives, Mayflies take flight and proceed to mate before immediately going back to the water to lay eggs and die.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

It's a plague of Biblical proportions. Ugly mayflies have descended on the state of Wisconsin, covering up exterior services like so much black, metallic dust. Photos coming out of Wisconsin is sure to send viewers itching - so beware of some of the sights in ... continue reading


Catholic Bishops Decry Obama's LGBT executive order as imprudent act of religious discrimination Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The chairmen of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops' Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty and Committee on Laity, Marriage, Family Life and Youth have been strong in their condemnation of President Obama's legislation on LGBT employees. "Today's ... continue reading


A Tribute to Protestant Bishop Tony Palmer, Friend of Francis and Champion of Christian Unity Watch

Image of The late Bishop Tony Palmer with Pope Francis- He was catapulted into prominence in the broader Christian community when, while meeting with his friend the Pope in January, he was given a recorded message from Francis to deliver to a large group of charismatic, evangelical protestant leaders who gathered in the United States. The video went viral. It moved millions to sincere prayer for the healing of the divisions in the broken Body of Christ and is prompting a renewed commitment to common apostolic action between Christians.

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

I never personally met Bishop Tony Palmer. However, I look forward to spending an eternity in the full communion of God's love with him. I appreciated his Christian courage and felt that his efforts were prophetic. He wrote his life - and lived his ministry - ... continue reading


Exclusive: Tribute to Bishop Tony Palmer, A Life Dedicated to Unity Watch

Image of (Pictured: Left to Right - Dirk West, Matteo Callisi, Bishop Tony Palmer, and Deacon Darrell Wentworth) - Faith to Bishop Tony Palmer was a dynamic, lived experience and, as a result, his life built up the whole Body of Christ and tore down the walls some have built to separate us from each other! What a legacy! A true example of living Jesus' prayer in John 17! (Deacon Darrell Wentworth)

By Deacon Darrell Wentworth

Monday, July 21, 2014, was supposed to be like most Mondays - the start of a work week. But Deacon Keith Fournier sent me a text informing me that my friend, Bishop Tony Palmer, had died. Shock went through my body as I processed that news; then disbelief as I ... continue reading


All U.S. News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Gospel, John 11:19-27
19 and many Jews had come to Martha and Mary to ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for July 29th, 2014 Image

St. Martha
July 29: "Jesus loved Martha and Mary and Lazarus." This unique ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter