Presbyterian pastor prays for healing and peace around the world
Published in the November 22 – December 5, 2017 issue of Morgan Hill Life
Morgan Hill Presbyterian Church Pastor Frank Riley spoke at the ceremony. A commander in the United States Navy Reserve, he also serves with Naval Special Warfare out of Coronado Island, San Diego. He is the chaplain for the reserve SEAL teams for the East and West Coast.ore than 200 local residents gathered around the Veterans Memorial in downtown Morgan Hill to honor the men and women who served America in the Armed Forces. The annual Veterans Day event — held Nov. 11 — was organized by a team led by U.S. Army veteran Eddie Bowers and included singing of patriotic songs by children taught by Karen Crane.
“It’s important to know what today is,” the Morgan Hill resident told the crowd. “Ninety-nine years ago today at 11 a.m. in Europe the guns fell silent and World War I ended. Here in Morgan Hill without doubt there were celebrations and there were tears of joy knowing that sons and daughters would be returning. And no doubt there were tears of sadness for sons that would not be returning.
“Ninety-nine years ago today the whole world actually celebrated today as Armistice Day. This is also the day that we celebrate veterans for our Remembrance Day is Memorial Day. So in our country on this day we remember those who fought and those who served and also those who didn’t return. For all you returning veterans, God bless you. And thank you for your service.
“World War I was supposed to be the war that ended all wars. But it didn’t. And so over the decades and over the nearly century that has passed, many of us have answered the nation’s call in times of peace and in times of war. And for all of us there has always been this hope that maybe, maybe, maybe the words of the Hebrew prophet would come true and the day will come when we will study war no more. And so on this day we thank God for those who have served. But we also pray for peace in the world. So let’s pray:
“Almighty God, on this morning we thank you for the men and women who have answered the call of our country to rise in her defense, to rise in her quest of freedom not only for our nation but for the nations of the world. Eternal Father, we understand that on this day it is a day both of pride of service but also, God, a day when we remember that our fellow service men and women have born wounds — some visible and some interior.
“And so God, on this day while we give you thanks for veterans, we would also ask that your hand of peace and holiness would be upon of us all in the midst of the hurts and the griefs that we bear. God, for those serving now in far-off countries and in harm’s way we pray for your protection and for your divine guidance.
“And Father, at the same time we ask constantly and beg that peace will overshadow our nation and from us it might break out into the world. May your peace be upon us each and every day, Eternal Father. We honor you on this morning, and we thank you for your providential care of our country and over all those who serve it. We ask these things in your most precious and holy name, amen.”