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Canora cenotaph service pays tribute to those who served

Thom Carnahan, padre for the Canora branch of the Royal Canadian Legion, shared the Act of Remembrance as a way of honouring and thanking veterans for their sacrifices.

CANORA - On a November 11 morning with unusually mild temperatures hovering just below the freezing mark, residents of Canora and the surrounding area gathered for the Remembrance Day service at the Canora cenotaph.

Lorrie Dennis, representative of the Canora branch of the Royal Canadian Legion, greeted everyone and thanked them for showing respect to those who served.

The service opened with the singing of O Canada, followed by the playing of The Last Post.

Two minutes of silence was observed to allow those in attendance to reflect on the sacrifices of those who gave so much to serve Canada. The silence was followed by the playing of Rouse.

Thom Carnahan, padre for the Canora branch of the Royal Canadian Legion, shared the Act of Remembrance as a way of honouring and thanking veterans for their sacrifices.

“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.”

Pastor Greg Bright followed with a prayer of remembrance.

“Dear Heavenly Father, You love us so much that You sent Your Son, Jesus into this world to die for us. You showed us what great love looks like. And You told us that great love is shown in sacrificing one’s life for another. You made this world, and we have messed it up, but we look to You and ask You to show us how to be people of peace and how to bring justice and hope and love and life to those around us.

“Thank You that You have not given up on us. You modelled this love. And today we honour others who also gave their lives for others. Thank You for Your sacrifice – a sacrifice that brought us life. And thank You for their sacrifice – a sacrifice that moved us toward peace. We remember their sacrifice. And we give thanks, even as we grieve that such a sacrifice was necessary.

“You have blessed us with this country and with the peace we enjoy here. We know things are not perfect here. We have work to do in reconciliation within our own borders. We do thank You, and acknowledge, the peace we have. Thank You, and keep us moving on toward peace. 

"Thank You for those who serve to keep peace and to administer justice within our country and our world. Show us how to do this better at home and how to help others as we grow ourselves. You teach us justice and mercy and forgiveness and healing. You show us the way of repentance and reconciliation. May we seek You and follow Your ways.

“Others pray in different ways. The only way I know is to pray to You, Heavenly Father, acknowledging Jesus, Your Son, as Saviour and Lord. And so it is to You that I appeal, seeking peace in Ukraine and in Israel and in the many other places where conflict is ongoing.

“Thank You for our police and for our military who seek to keep and bring peace in our communities and our country and in various places around the world. Thank You for those who serve in this way, placing themselves in danger in order to bring peace and life to others.

“We do not glorify war and violence. We do not celebrate our superiority over someone else.

"We thank You for leading us into the way of peace. Help us to keep to Your path and may we continue to be ministers of peace here and wherever we go, as regular citizens and in whatever roles we may be privileged to serve.

“Thank You, Father, for Your goodness to us. We pray this in Jesus’ name, Amen.”

Lorrie Dennis introduced groups and individuals who were to lay wreaths at the cenotaph in remembrance. Those laying wreaths included: Mayor Mike Kwas, representing the Town of Canora; Canora-Pelly MLA Terry Dennis, representing the Government of Saskatchewan; Sgt. Derek Friesen, representing the Government of Canada and the RCMP; President Cathy Trach, representing the Canora branch of the Royal Canadian Legion; Petty Officer Second Class Al Cook, representing the Armed Forces; Cpl. Maisie Kuzminski and Captain Darren Paul of the Canora squadron of the Royal Canadian Air Cadets, representing the air cadet movement, and representatives of Aspen Paramedic Service and Canora & District Fire Rescue, representing first responders.

After the laying of the wreaths, Padre Carnahan prayed the benediction and blessing. “Today in community we have we shared our respect, thankfulness and remembrance of our veterans who gave so much that we can enjoy freedom and peace.

“O God, we remember those from the storm of wars into the peace of Your eternal presence; may that peace calm our fears and establish loving harmony among all the nations. We go now to St Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church to experience the spiritual component of this day, offered by the Ministerial Association. We finish with 2 Thessalonians 3:16 ‘Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in every way. The Lord be with you all.’  Amen.”

The singing of God Save The King closed the service at the cenotaph.

Approximate attendance at the cenotaph service was 120, 70 for the church service and 75 at the Legion Dugout meal; higher than the attendance at all three locations in 2022.

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