More than ribbons
Our preschool students created cards and other artwork for the soldiers of Charlie Company of the Georgia National Guard's 48th infantry. The kids did not understand the grief the soldiers experience having recently suffered 11 deaths in the 48th. But with many of them having their own fathers away at sea for as much as half the year, they do understand a father being far from home.
Together with the kids' creations (which will be the soldiers favorite now doubt), the mission council (church board) also decided to buy some phone cards and a few DVDs for a little extra something from home.
My religion column for today's issue of the Tribune & Georgian is called Support our troops with more than ribbons and it tells about "heroes in Kevlar" and goes on to say in part,
Back home, cars are decorated with magnetic ribbons proudly declaring “We support our troops” and similar sayings. But if all one does is buy a magnetic ribbon, were the troops the ones supported or was it the Chinese magnetic ribbon makers? This is not to belittle the ribbons. They are, after all, a tangible sign for one another that our friends and loved ones are currently serving in a very hostile environment.The article goes on to give two concrete suggestions for supporting our troops. The pictures here show us following through on one of the suggestions. You can visit our online prayer vigil to follow through on the second.
Instead of criticizing the bumper stickers, I want to expand ideas about how to make that support tangible. After all, no matter what one feels about the war, we can all agree that we need to support those who are serving in Afghanistan, Iraq and the Persian Gulf area.
The Rev. Frank Logue, Pastor + King of Peace Episcopal Church