Memorial Day

By James Lowe

Monday, May 29th, marks Memorial Day, 2023. As you enjoy the day/weekend, here are some facts that you may or may not know about Memorial Day:

  • Memorial Day was officially established as a national public holiday in 1868 by General John A. Logan. The general was the head of a group of Union veterans.
  • The celebration from 1868 to 1970 was celebrated every year on May 30th.
  • The memorial was first called Decoration Day-named for commemorating soldiers’ graves.
  • The name gradually changed until it officially became Memorial Day in 1967.
  • In 1968, the date was changed with the Uniform Monday Holiday Act, which moved Memorial Day and four other holidays to Mondays to create a three-day weekend.
  • In 2000, Congress passed “The National Moment of Remembrance Act” to encourage people to stop and remember fallen servicemen and women at 3:00 PM.
  • On Memorial Day, the Department of Veterans Affairs guidelines say the flag should be raised to the top of the pole quickly and lowered to half-staff.
  • Finally, Memorial Day is different from Veterans Day. The latter celebrates all service men and women throughout U.S. History, while Memorial Day technically only honors those who died while serving.

Christianity is also marked by remembering. Every day is good, because God made it! But, we celebrate some very special days during the year:

  • Our spiritual birth
  • Our baptism
  • The Lord’s Supper or Communion
  • Christmas
  • Holy week, including Good Friday and Easter

Why is it important to remember our fallen soldiers? We are fortunate to have a stable country that has maintained a democracy for almost 250 years. Without the supreme sacrifices of our fallen soldiers, this would not be a reality. We owe them, at a minimum, a moment of remembrance and appreciation!

Why is it important to remember the special days of our Christian faith? Honestly, it is essential to read the Bible daily and allow God to help us learn lessons and be strengthened by the entire Bible. But these days listed are crucial to our Christian faith. Holy Week, culminating with Good Friday and Easter, marks the death and Resurrection of one, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ-at a minimum-a moment of remembrance and gratitude (and much more)!

Congratulations Jack!

PAYH celebrates another milestone with Jack’s Graduation on April 21st. Following his graduation, he was baptized at his home church and has enjoyed spending quality time with his family. He will enter the United States Marine Corps on May 7thClick here to view Jack taking the Military Oath of Enlistment. Click here to view Jack’s graduation slideshow. Way to go Jack! We are so proud of you!!!

2023 Onion Run

The young men enjoyed an amazing day at the 2023 Vidalia Onion Run. The run is a course that takes runners through the historic sections of the city and the challenging hills around town. It’s a great way for our young men to connect with the community and share with everyone what the Youth Home is all about.

2023 Annual PAYH Bike

PAYH continues the tradition Paul Anderson started years ago. Our bike ride is always one of the Home’s largest fundraising events. Anderson, a world-class athlete, stressed physical fitness as one component of honoring God. His philosophy, through his lessons, of how keeping your body physically fit is as important as exercising the mind, filling it with positivity and prayer.

The ride is scheduled for July 8-14, 2023. You can contribute to the ride by going online to

Remembering Lou Wilkes

“To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die.”
~ Thomas Campbell

The loss of a dear loved one is never easy. Even during a season of grief, you remember and honor them through your memories. Those memories are treasures you keep in the depths of your heart. Your inward riches become an outward reach to others, defined as a legacy that continues to live. Lou Wilkes leaves that legacy throughout the walls of PAYH.

For over 30 years, Lou was a fixture in the academic realm of teaching our young men the importance of learning and applying good grammar. She was an essential resource in preparing them for the SAT and GED preparation. She encouraged the boys to continue far beyond the time spent at PAYH to sharpen their skills to succeed in life.

Her dedication to PAYH made her among the top 10 finalists in the 2001 Atlanta Falcons Community Quarterback Award.

Since 1979, she helped young men realize their positive traits. This was always, to her, her second home. We are saddened by her absence on the earth, but excited she now eternally rests in her primary Home.

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