“Blessed Are the Peacemakers” - Veteran's Day Special - Sunday, November 6, 2016
On November 11, 1918, at 11:00 in the morning, warring nations agreed to an armistice—a truce—and World War I came to an end. Bombing and gunfire ceased, soldiers returned to their families, and the war-scarred land rested and began to heal. Years later, the 11th day of the 11th month became a national day of remembrance—Veterans Day, a day “dedicated to the cause of world peace.”1 Yet it wasn’t long before, once again, the sounds of war would be heard and soldiers would be called upon to serve their country in defense of freedom.
Yes, history has taught us that the cause of peace needs more than one dedicated day per year. Today Veterans Day is a celebration that honors the veterans not just for what they have done in times of war but also what they continue to do to promote the dream of peace.
Indeed, some of the world’s most courageous and effective peacemakers are our veterans—those who know firsthand the cost of war, because it is a cost they have paid personally.
To give just one example, not long after Veterans Day was first established, Congress chartered the American Legion as a patriotic veterans’ organization. Today the American Legion has grown from a small group of World War I veterans to an influential organization of nearly two and a half million. Through its programs and services, the legion seeks “to preserve the memories” of the wars of the past, “to promote peace and good will on earth,” and “to safeguard and transmit to posterity the principles of justice, freedom and democracy.”2
Such noble aims should inspire all of us—those who have served in the armed forces and those who have been blessed by their service—to dedicate ourselves to the cause of peace, not just on the 11th day of the 11th month, but always. We can remember with reverence and gratitude the sacrifices made in times of war. We can make peace in our families, in our communities, and in our hearts. And we can teach the next generation to cherish the blessings of freedom that our veterans won for us. As we do, we will learn the truth of the words “Blessed are the peacemakers.”3
-Lloyd D. Newell
1. In U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, “History of Veterans Day,” va.gov/opa/vetsday/vetdayhistory.asp.
2. American Legion, “Preamble to the Constitution,” legion.org/preamble.
3. Matthew 5:9.
November 6, 2016
Broadcast Number 4,547
Mormon Tabernacle Choir
Orchestra at Temple Square
Dallyn Vail Bayles
This Is a Great Country, from Mr. President
Irving Berlin; arr. Michael Davis
Who Are the Brave?
Joseph M. Martin
The Mansions of the Lord, from We Were Soldiers
Nick Glennie-Smith; arr. Clay Christiansen
America the Beautiful
Samuel Ward; arr. Michael Davis
The Last Full Measure of Devotion
Larry Grossman; arr. Ian Fraser
Let There Be Peace on Earth
Sy Miller and Jill Jackson; arr. Michael Davis
A Tribute to the Armed Services
arr. Lloyd Larson