Today as many Australians went to the Dawn Services to celebrate the centenary of ANZAC I was praying my daily Liturgy of Hours and at the end there was this prayer:
source of peace that the world cannot give,
kindly hear our constant prayer
for those who bore witness to your own fidelity
by giving their lives for those they loved.
Resurrect them in our true homeland
and perfect that peace for which they longed and died.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
"At 5am, three platoons of the leading company of the 7th Battalion set off in four of the ship’s boats. As they moved away from the dim light, the Company Commander, Major Jackson could see the flashes of shells and rifles to their front. Approaching the shore, the men caught the sound of firing, to their right they could see shells bursting over other boats of the Battalion. Ahead they saw rifle and machine gun fire cutting up the water. As the lead boat, under the command of Captain Layh, entered the field of fire, five out of the six rowers were shot, but others took the oars, and they pushed on. The boat was scraping the shingle when, as Captain Layh threw himself into the water beside it, he was shot through the hip. As he turned to call the mean forward, he was again shot in the leg. With the survivors, he scrambled toward the little grass-tufted sand hummocks fringing the beach, and they lay low behind them. Of the 140 men in the four boats, only 3 officers and 36 men, many wounded, made the safety of the hummocks, the rest lay dead or dying behind them."