A proposal for Armistice Day: Sunday, November 11th

Armistice Day was established as a Federal holiday in 1938 as “a day to be dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be thereafter celebrated and known as ‘Armistice Day’.” It was repurposed as Veterans Day in 1954.

A Proposal: Let’s return to the old tradition of observing Armistice Day as a day for peace.

2018 is the hundredth anniversary of the end of World War I. The war ended on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month: November 11th, 11:00am.

At 11:00am this November 11th, a Sunday, most Unitarian Universalist congregations will be holding worship services. At that time, let’s all focus our services and our activities on peace.

There will be other activities taking place on and around November 11th. Most of those will emphasize relatively transient concerns, many of them important. Peace is a permanent issue. We have never known a time of world peace. We don’t know if it can be achieved; and if it can, we don’t know how. We will be challenged by peace for the rest of our lives. We remain hopeful.

Last month, the Arkansas UU Cluster and the Arkansas UU Justice Ministry “decided to celebrate the 100th Anniversary of Armistice Day on 11/11/2018. On November 11, 1918, at 11:00 a.m., World War I ended with an armistice. While the War to End All Wars never fulfilled that promise, UUs in Arkansas wanted to celebrate peace and the end of war. Join us as we celebrate a peace worthy of the name and honor all people of peace through Arkansas, the United States, and the World.” This proposal is an effort to amplify that call and to encourage people everywhere–especially Unitarian Universalists, but everyone who wants more peace in the world–to celebrate Armistice day this Sunday, November 11th, at or about 11:00am.

This is a dedicated page for Armistice Day resources. Your suggestions and contributions are welcome.

3 thoughts on “A proposal for Armistice Day: Sunday, November 11th”

  1. Sergeant Charlie Bell, of the Lincolnshire Regiment was my grandfather. In November 1918 he was due to go up to the front with the rest of his battalion, and after a couple of days come back to go on leave. And for some reason he was particularly nervous.

    It was the practice to hold back a few experienced soldiers as a cadre, in case something went badly wrong, and my grandfather found himself on that list. A few days later he started his trip home, via Boulogne and Folkestone, the usual route.

    He arrived at Folkestone early on the 11th November, and boarded the train for London. He arrived in an apparently deserted London, at around midday. He looked into a pub to ask what was going on, and, a soldier in uniform, didn’t have to buy a drink for the rest of the day.

    We never heard what the young lady who was to become my grandmother thought when he turned up late, with what must have been a major hangover. He finished his leave and went back to his battalion in France.

    My father was born on the 24th June 1920.

    1. Dave, thank you for your comments. My apologies my the slowness in approving them. Your father and mine were born in the same year. I think people who don’t know people with living memory of that time can’t quite grasp the impact it had on them. And I hope your grandmother understood. Since she did become your grandmother, I bet she did.

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