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Army chaplain to speak at church

Lt. Col. John J. Morris, who recently returned from his third tour of duty as an Army chaplain in Iraq, will be the featured speaker at the Saturday, May 29, Memorial observance at St. Mary's Church-Basswood Grove, in Denmark Township. Morris is also co-creator of "Beyond the Yellow Ribbon," a program that serves to reintegrate National Guard members into society.

The observance will begin with a prayer service plus special music at 10 a.m. inside the historic church, followed by a ceremony in the adjacent cemetery. The ceremony will include a color guard; honoring the 12 Army, Air Force and Marine troops from Minnesota who gave their lives in 2009 in the service of their country; and calling the roll of veterans who are buried at St. Mary's, some of whom date back to the Civil War, according to a press release.

All are invited to this observance, with a special invitation extended to veterans and children. St. Mary's, founded in 1863 as a Bishop Whipple congregation, is located at 8435 South St. Croix Trail, north of Hastings and Prescott, and a mile-and-a-half south of Afton Alps. For details, call coordinator Bob Livingston at (612) 875-0330.