Padre Min Kim’s Cogitatio on Preparation

November, 2017

 

It has become a long tradition that we do something special in this time of year: a Christmas Hamper Campaign to support the military families on the base. Last year we not only collected dry foods, but also adopted families.


We are not at Christmas yet; it’s still November. Why do we talk about it now? As is always the case, our actions of collecting dry foods and adopting families begins not in December but much earlier. 


Preparation is an essential part of any successful event. Whether it is a matter of personal, family, or military events, planning in advance is necessary. A wise man once said, “Go to the ant…consider her ways, and be wise. Without having any chief, officer, or ruler, she prepares her bread in summer and gathers her food in harvest” (Proverbs 6:6-8). We are taught to learn from the ant.
After all, November is a month of preparation. Many in our Regiment are out in the field for Ex IRON RAM in Wainwright; some of Recce Squadron are still in Latvia; and the rear party contingent includes soldiers who have just returned from Ukraine. All are preparing for the future.


At this time of year, I also prepare prayers for the Remembrance ceremonies. This includes “No Stone Left Alone” at Beechmount Cemetery on 6 November 2017, as well as an informal Remembrance ceremony for Tpr Michael Hayakaze, who was killed in Afghanistan during operations. This year is the 9th year of such Remembrance. Personally, it’s the third year of participating in and offering prayers during the ceremony. Each year, more people gather at his gravesite to remember his sacrifice. In fact, many more communities remember him. Last year, for example, the football team of Eastglen High School in Edmonton that Michael formerly graduated from held a special ceremony before their semi-final game. (See more details of the story https://globalnews.ca/news/3061872/edmonton-high-school-honoured-former-student-and-fallen-soldier/). Such a ceremony, I’m sure, must have been prepared in advance in honour of remembering him.


It is my privilege, I confess, to prepare the prayers for all soldiers, including Michael, who sacrificed themselves for the peace of the world. It is my honour to offer the prayers on behalf of our Regiment, families of soldiers and veterans, and Michael’s family and friends.


For anyone who wishes to visit Michael Hayakaze’s gravesite to pay tribute to his sacrifice, here are the address and location: Evergreen Memorial Gardens, 16102 Fort Road NW, Edmonton AB. Section: Veterans, Lot 1096, Space C1.