Working as a Pastor we have always celebrated holidays in church. I put together videos for Memorial Day, Independence Day, Veteran’s Day, etc. I always wondered why we celebrated each of these holidays in the same way. So many people celebrate their veterans on memorial day, the active soldiers on veterans day, and those who lost their lives on both. Interestingly, there are separate holidays to celebrate each different group of military personnel.
On the final Monday in the month of May we celebrate a holiday referred to as Memorial Day. It is a time to celebrate the memory of those fallen. Individuals who were in the military but are no longer with us. For most people this would only include those lost in battle. For me I include veterans who have now passed on.
On November 11 we celebrate Veteran’s Day. This day acknowledges those who were at one time in the military but are no longer. They may have retired from full time service or were discharged when their time was up, either way, they served, but are no longer in the service.
The final day is the one most people miss. It falls on the 3rd Saturday in May and is at the end of Armed Forces Week. Armed Forces Day recognizes individuals who are in the Armed Forces.
Next time you decide to celebrate a military holiday, make sure you know which one you are celebrating. And if you forget then honor all three just in case.