(Read at ARAC Meetings)
I was that which others did not want to be. I went where others feared to go. And did what others failed to do. I asked nothing from those who gave nothing, and reluctantly accepted the thought of eternal loneliness, should I fail. I have seen the face of terror, felt the cold sting of fear, and enjoyed the sweet taste of a moment of love. I have cried, pained and hoped, but most of all I have lived times others would say were best forgotten. At least someday I will be able to say I was proud of what I was!
An Airborne Soldier
The Paratrooper’s Prayer
|Aspirant (Second Lieutenant) André Zirnheld was the first Free French SAS officer to fall in Libya in a gun jeep raid on Nazi airfields deep behind enemy lines on July 27, 1942. Hurriedly buried in a desert sand dune; his friends found in his officer’s note book the following prayer that he had written in Tunis in 1938. Entitled "A Paratrooper’s Prayer," it will become the symbol of courage, force and faith that burns inside every paratrooper’s heart. It has remained untouched from one generation of paras to another. It is always read or sung each day by all the paras of France. They know it by heart like their predecessors of the Second World War, of French Indo China’s jungles, the hell of Dien Bien Phu and lastly during the Algerian war.|
THE PARATROOPER'S PRAYER
I'm asking You God, to give me what You have left.
Give me those things which others never ask of You.
I’m not asking You for rest, or tranquillity.
Nor that of the spirit, body, or mind.
I’m not asking You for wealth, success, or even health.
All those things are asked of You so much Lord, that you probably don’t have any left to give.
Lord instead give me what You have left.
Give me what others don't want.
I want uncertainty and doubt.
I want the tempest and battle.
And I ask that You give them to me forever Lord.
This, so I can be sure to always have them, because I won't always have the courage to ask for them from You again.
Give me what you have left Lord, because I can't ask them of myself.
Lord give me what you have left and what others do not want, but give me also courage, strength and faith.
May the defence of the Most High be above and beneath, around and within us,
in our going out and in our coming in,
in our rising up and our going down,
all our days and all our nights,
until the dawn when the son of righteousness shall arise
with healing in his wings for the peoples of the World
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
An Airborne Soldier