We come this day, called by war
By the suffering we inflict and endure
When minds across borders
fail to reason and compromise.
We come this day, called by loss,
The deaths of those who serve in our name,
Those whose lives end before their natural course
In service to a cause greater than their own.
We come this day, called by hope
Hope that we will, in some season,
Finally surrender our swords for ploughshares
And we come this day called by peace.
May we hear its song, may we proclaim its promise.
May our remembrance today renew our struggle
We can never stay or rest.
(Heather suggests following these opening words with Hymn #161 in Singing the Living Tradition, "Peace! The Perfect Word," as the last line draws from the hymn.)