Remembrance Sunday this year was not quite the same as usual as it fell exactly a century since the end of the First World War on 11 November 1918.
This war was probably the first where international conflict had so much impact at a local level as a result of the terrible losses sustained by volunteer and conscripted forces.
As a tribute to those who lost their lives, memorial columns and memorial halls were erected in our towns and villages, and around them the practice of remembrance grew. In the community of Trefeurig and the village of Penrhyn-coch, near Aberystwyth, there is a very striking monument on the village square and a memorial plaque on the wall of S. John’s Church to the memory of the young men who served in the forces and especially those killed on the battlefields.
The older pupils Ysgol Gymunedol Penrhyn-coch were part of the remembering this year. In the week leading up to Remembrance Sunday, the pupils focused mainly on giving thanks. Appreciation was recorded for those who were willing to sacrifice so much for others by means of writing letters of thanks, creating English-language poems, and composing prayers in class.
As part of remembrance and giving, memorial cards were also created and these cards were placed on the graves of young men from the area or those associated with the area who had died in war. These memorial cards were placed on graves locally but also on graves in the war cemeteries on the fields of Flanders and northern France, with the helpof Mrs Lynwen Jenkins and family
. On Wednesday, November 7, pupils from the school came to S. John’s Church, Penrhyn-coch with their teacher, Mrs Lynwen Evans. They were welcomed by Revd Lyn Dafis and there was an opportunity for them to see to see the memorials to the dead in church, including the memorial plaque and the fine reredos given in memory of one of those lost. Then the names of those who fought and were lost in the two world wars were read out before the prayers written by the pupils. The prayers expressed gratitude and remembrance for the soldiers, but they also asked God for peace and an end to the fighting that is still happening around the world today.
After the visiting the Church and leaving a small exhibition for Remembrance Sunday, the pupils went on to place a memorial card on one of the graves in graveyard and then on to the war memorial on the village square, Penrhyn-coch.
Revd Lyn Dafis