We Will Remember

An image of a single poppy and the words lest we forget

“They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning,

we will remember them.”

~ Laurence Binyon, from For The Fallen

Today is Remembrance Day, and it seems to me many of us have forgotten its true meaning. I feel many people believe it is a day to glorify war and celebrate the military. Now, I am not saying that veterans should not be acknowledged for their service or that we should fail to remember those who perished. Not at all. Their sacrifices and bravery are worthy of recognition.

However, Remembrance Day, originally known as Armistice Day, means much more.

A Deeper Meaning

Every year, since 1919, on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, countries around the globe commemorate the armistice agreement that ended the First World War at 11:00 a.m. on November 11, 1918.

The agreement was signed in France by the Allies and Germany. This pact halted the fighting on land, sea and air and brought an end to World War I.

An old sepia coloured photo of a soldier carrying his gear, walking on a bridge
Photo by Stijn Swinnen on Unsplash

Today, we continue to observe Remembrance Day on November 11 every year in Canada and other countries. We pause for two minutes of silence. Those few moments allow us to reflect upon the horrors of war. The stillness allows us the time to honour the men and women who served during times of war and to encourage us to stand for peace.

“Lest we forget” is a call to action. A commitment to building peace and to ending all war.

Today, as we observe this solemn occasion, let us remember the original message of remembrance — “Never Again.” For those who leave, never to return. For those who return but are never the same. We will remember.

The Last Post in honour of those whose lives were lost

Have you heard about the White Poppies Initiative?

Founded in 2007, Vancouver Peace Poppies offers alternative Remembrance Day services. They encourage the wearing of white poppies to honour all victims of war, military and civilian alike.

White lapel poppies, first introduced in England in 1933, stand as a symbol of peace and a pledge to seek non-violent solutions to conflict. These poppies can be worn alone or beside the red poppy every November 11.

A photo of white and red poppies in a field
susafri from Getty Images Signature on Canva

Find out more about Remembrance and White Poppies on the U.K’s Peace Pledge Union website.