Saturday morning, Hannah and I joined Dad in his room for breakfast to watch the live Fox broadcast of the commissioning ceremony for the USS George H.W. Bush. We listened to former President George H.W. Bush give the keynote address, thanking and commending the nearly 6000 sailors and Marines who will serve aboard the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier. We enjoyed witnessing the pleasure on his face when an Avenger torpedo bomber, the type he flew during World War II, flew over in his honor.
The 41st President asked God’s blessings on all those who will be sailing on the ship, and the 43rd President asked for God to “let her know only victory and peace.” Dorothy Bush Koch, the sponsor of the ship, declared that the ship and it’s crew would stay close to her heart, and would always be in her prayers.
As sailors ran to man the rails, bringing the ship to life, Dad, Hannah, and I discussed how we could support the crew of the USS George H.W. Bush. We agreed that the most powerful thing we could do was to follow the example of the Bush family, and to faithfully lift up the ship and crew in prayer.
Later in the morning when I described the commissioning ceremony to Mark (who was unable to watch due to his travel schedule), he reminded me of the Carrier video that he had added to Dad’s stack of to-be-watched videos. Carrier is a 2005 PBS documentary of another floating naval air station, the USS Nimitz. Watching 10-hours worth of sailor’s stories will enable us to pray specifically for those who live and work on the most powerful warship in the world.
The hymn, “Eternal Father, Strong to Save,” also known as the Navy Hymn, is a fine prayer in itself.
Mark has sung “Eternal Father” many times at King’s Point Military Academy. This hangs in our home as a reminder to remember in prayer all those who are at sea.