It is rather striking that in the popular American summer season; we begin and end with days (Memorial Day and Labor Day) that starkly remind us of sacrifice.
Interestingly in the middle of that is the Fourth of July, which reminds us that without our nation’s freedom none of this would be possible. Labor Day reminds us that without hard work we would not have the blessings that we do, while Memorial Day reminds us that some of our friends and family aren’t with us today because they paid the ultimate price for freedom.
Naturally this all has religious symbolism not only in the words of Jesus and His Apostles but with countless saints through the ages. The founding fathers, the labor movement and the military always couched their word with religious imagery and fervor. Some in our society want to take that imagery ad fervor away. Sometimes it takes someone who is not an American to help us see the trees for the forest. Robert Cardinal Sarah is one such man. His Eminence hails from the West African nation of Guinea.
In his travels to our country, Cardinal Sarah has often repeated his long held belief that where God’s words are not respected and believed, wars, societal infighting, rage, hatred, self-pity, and persecution complexes become the norm. Let us enjoy our summer with company of family and friends, but let us never forget the blessings God has given us.
Dave Hartline is a Catholic writer, who graduated from Marion Catholic High School and Ohio University. He has also been a Catholic school teacher, coach and administrator in the Diocese of Columbus. He currently is the Stewardship and Development Director at St. Joan of Arc Parish in Powell. He is the author of various articles as well as two Catholic books. He is the author of an book on unreported “Good News” in the Catholic Church published by St. Benedict Press.