We give thanks this year for so many new friends
and continuing longtime friendships.
I am also thankful that we live in a place like
Calhoun County. At the time of the Civil War, West Virginia and, yes,
Calhoun County, were involved in the greatest tragedy of our America. It
was a struggle of brother against brother. In four years, over 620,000
soldiers lost their lives. The number of civilian deaths is unknown.
More Americans lost their lives in the Civil War than in all of the
nation’s other wars combined.
Toward the end of the Civil War, when hatred
between the North and South was at the highest point, Abraham Lincoln
was asked to speak to a group of staunch Unionists, who were parents
that lost their sons and husbands in battle. Lincoln spoke with
compassion for the Southerners. He said in plain words that he pitied
After his speech, an older lady admonished the
president for speaking kindly of his enemies. She said that he should be
more concerned with wiping the Confederates off the earth and bringing
the war to a close. He replied in his gentle way, “Madam, don’t I
destroy my enemies when I make them my friends?”
It was this tender spirit of Lincoln that kept
America from being totally destroyed. Even though Lincoln died a violent
death at the hands of an assassin, his example still lives, helping
Americans to bind up their wounds and seek peace with their neighbor.
Calhoun County is a “melting pot” of old line
families, mixed with new neighbors from all over the U.S., and even the
world. These are people who are making a contribution to our lives. Let
us join hands and pray with our neighbors. We must work together for the
future of our county, state, nation and world.
We must care.
When you are making out your Christmas card list
this year, please include the following:
A Recovering American Soldier
c/o Walter Reed Army Medical Center
6900 Georgia Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20307-5001
If everyone sends a card, these special people, who
gave so much, will know they are appreciated.
God, we give You thanks for the delicious food on
the loved ones gathered around, and the love that
We thank You for the peace of this day and the hope
which we expect tomorrow.
We give thanks for health, laughter, and the bright
that make our lives delightful, and for You, who
it all possible.
We are humbly grateful. Amen.