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The cancelled Plains of Abraham battle.

I note from the media that there is a good deal of discussion concerning a possible reenactment of the 1759 Plains of Abraham battle.

Apart from calling attention to the scandal of two soidisant Christian nations, France and England, going to war at that time and killing off their best, there must be a more seemly way to mark this historical event.

I recall seeing, some years ago, a television report about a group of French and German army veterans from the Second World War meeting for a mass of reconciliation in a chapel of the former Maginot Line. Mass was celebrated by an aumonier, or chaplain, of the French army. In the 1950s, de Gaulle and Adenauer met at a Mass at Cologne Cathedral in the Rhineland. I recall a guide in that cathedral mentioning it.

Such sublime events are a long way from the nervous, evanescent, false camaraderie of a raucus beer hall. At the same time, the battle re-enactments which take place in the lower forty-eight seem to have an inherent childishness to them.

Since in 1759 only Catholics and Anglicans, for the most part, were involved, perhaps representatives of these two faiths could hold a memorial or prayer service on the Plains. I would hope that such a service would not offend atheists, secularists or Canadian politicians pandering for votes.

Ottawa, ON
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Author:Curran, W.J.
Publication:Catholic Insight
Article Type:Letter to the editor
Date:May 1, 2009
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