It’s a day quickly only remembered by historians, but I can’t see June 6 without thinking of that night and morning in which young men threw themselves into darkness and death to fight against a genuine enemy of civilization. In college, I discovered a recording of FDR reading a prayer to the American nation after announcing the onset of D-Day, and even though I was an ardent anti-religionist at the time, it moved me. When I listened to it today, certain parts of it lept out as especially relevant for our time.
“Success may not come with rushing speed, but we shall return again and again; and we know that by Thy grace, and by the righteousness of our cause, our sons will triumph.
They will be sore tried, by night and by day, without rest-until the Victory is won. […..]
With Thy blessing, we shall prevail over the unholy forces of our enemy. Help us to conquer the apostles of greed and racial arrogancies. Lead us to the saving of our country, and with our sister Nations into a world unity that will spell a sure peace a peace invulnerable to the schemings of unworthy men. And a peace that will let all of men live in freedom, reaping the just rewards of their honest toil.
Thy will be done, Almighty God.”