The Nation Remembers

The Revd. Rupert Toovey, Chaplain to the Royal British Legion, Storrington Branch, leading a service of remembrance accompanied by the local Guides

Next week we will once again reflect upon the costs of defending righteousness, freedom and liberty, giving thanks not only for our allies but also for reconciliation and peace.

Across Britain, Europe and America the common story and Christian heritage which unites us will be expressed in services of Remembrance and thanksgiving. In churches and beside War Memorials across Britain these familiar bidding words will be heard:

“We have come to remember before God those who have died for their country in the two world wars and the many conflicts of the years that have followed. Some we knew and loved: we treasure their memory still. Others are unknown to us: to their remembrance too, we give our time…With thanksgiving we recall services offered and sacrifices made…”

In Storrington the Royal British Legion are celebrating their 100th Anniversary and will be leading the local community in acts of remembrance and the Poppy Appeal. Each year poppies are sold to raise vital funds to help today’s Armed Forces community and this year in Storrington the Guides are assisting.

A short act of remembrance will take place on the 11th November at 11.00am in Storrington High Street at the Roll of Honour by The White Horse Inn.

Remembrance Sunday falls on the14th November this year and a service of remembrance and thanksgiving will be held at St Mary’s Parish Church, Storrington at 2.50pm uniting our community across the generations. The standards of the Royal British Legion, the Royal Navy Association and the youth organisations will be on parade as wreaths are laid at the War Memorial and during the service.

The Royal British Legion, Storrington Branch, and Royal Navy Association standard bearers, Des Knight and Richard Shenton

Families, communities and nations are bound together by their shared stories; stories of both joys and sorrows. Where these memories are embraced with open hearts they seed compassion, hope, empathy and a desire to work for the common good – something which our armed forces know intuitively. And our nation is once again united by the evolving story, the shared experience of Covid-19.

I hope that in the coming week of remembrance each of us will be able to find time to reflect, offering thanks and prayers for the courage of successive generations who have been called, and continue to be called, to defend the greater cause of justice and concord.