Monday, November 14, 2011

Gettysburg Address


Gettysburg Address – November 19th, 1863
I believe it is appropriate for this November week to give reverence to an event which took place long ago.  At times it is more important to focus on a vision and on ideals than the reality especially when the reality looks bleak and discouraging.  With the media speaking of depression and recession we have to find something empowering to look at.

The Gettysburg Address moves us deeply with its powerful words, reminding us that we are all created equal, living under ONE GOD.  We have a responsibility to honor our ancestors and those who lived and died before us to carry on their hopes and dreams; and bring them into fruition.  Mr. Lincoln had a foresight beyond his time that’s why he is remembered and often quoted.  Here is his most important speech:   

Four score and seven years ago, our fathers brought forth upon this continent a new nation: conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battlefield of that war.
We have come to dedicate a portion of that field as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.
But, in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow (sanctify)  this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember, what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here.
It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us - that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion - that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain - that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom - and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
~ Abraham Lincoln, (1809-1865) 16th American President 
Historians have concluded that this speech had even greater significance than the war itself. It is such a short speech but so very engaging; reminiscing of those soldiers who gave their lives but also reminding us of our duty to this nation. 

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