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2020-05-25 Blades of Grass and Pure White Stones

Today we recognize and honor the men and women who have given their lives in service to our country. We are eternally grateful for their gift of freedom to all of us living today.

Several years ago, our choir at First United Methodist Church Long Beach sang one of the most moving tributes to our fallen soldiers I have ever heard: “Blades of Grass and Pure White Stones”. This anthem was written in 2006 by Senator Orin Hatch (with Philip Naish and Lowell Alexander) in memory of his brother, who was killed in World War II. He says, “Anyone who has walked the hallowed ground at Arlington or any other military cemetery will understand this tribute to those who have sacrificed everything for freedom and country."

The lyrics are too beautiful not to share this Memorial Day. I do not have a piano arrangement of this beautiful anthem, so I have improvised from a choir version I found online.  I hope as you read the words and listen to the music that you reflect on the memory of our fallen heroes and remember their sacrifice.

Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.

John 15:13 (NKJV)

Blades of grass and pure white stones
Shelter those who've come and gone.
Just below the emerald sod are those who've reached the arms of God.


Buried here with dignity,
Endless rows for all to see.
Freedom's seed in sorrow sown
‘Neath blades of grass and pure white stones.


Blades of grass and pure white stones
Cover those who've left their homes,
To rest in fields, here side by side,
Lest we forget their sacrifice.


Buried here with dignity,
Endless rows for all to see.
Freedom's seeds in sorrow sown
'Neath blades of grass and pure white stones.

 
*Devotion and music provided by Jane Cockrell

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