This past May our family had the opportunity to travel to Europe, visiting Germany and Denmark. On the first leg of our journey we drove from Frankfurt to Berlin and I noticed beautiful patches of wild flowers along the way. I marvelled at the quaint little towns we would pass with church steeples standing tall. The cobblestone squares as gathering places to share stories and laughs with friends and family. Such a beautiful country side; tranquil, peaceful. Yes, I could easily find myself living here.

Arriving in Berlin we began touring the many historical sites, where not so long ago there was no peace. It was hard to believe there was a time where the beautiful land we were travelling now was not always such. Here we were, standing in history; on ground where battles were waged. Not only physical battles but battles of strength of mind, heart and perseverance. Those days were heavy days as we read about personal stories of families torn apart, those taking a stand and being a voice, knowing what it would cost and yet still willing to risk everything. Seeing photos of the faces, physical landmarks, tunnels dug for freedom and buildings of shelter or worship destroyed. It had a huge impact on my family. History that we had read about in books was now where we placed our feet. The bravery of those who told their stories, those who stood up for the unjust ways in the most difficult of times was something that we took away with us, forever in our hearts.

Today, Remembrance Day, we remember the many lives changed forever by war, I think of the men and women who fought to protect, for those to have freedom. They gave so that many could live. We will not forget.

There are still battles waging around the world today, maybe not all are physical battles, but those just as powerful. Ones speaking of hatred and greed, seeking power by attempting to make others powerless. But we can be the voice for the voiceless, even if it is in the small things around us on a daily basis. When we hear words of hate being used, say something. When we see those struggling, do something. Small steps taken will lead to miles gained as we journey a road to freedom for all.

Where it is possible to sow kindness, there is peace.

Small Voice

I am just a small small voice sometimes never heard.

So listen very closely to my each and every word.

Each of us can make a difference, each of us can touch a heart.

Each of us can hold a hand, each of us can do our part.

I am just a small voice wanting all people to live free.

It’s up to every one to change the sadness that we see.

Each of us can say a prayer, each of us can shed a tear.

Each of us can share with others, whether far away or near.

I am just a small voice but I will make my message clear.

All children should be safe and never have to live in fear.

Each of us can take a stand, each of us can make a choice.

Each of us can speak together and have a louder voice.

-Nikki Kroetsch Bergstresser

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