Commemoration Day of Fallen Soldiers

Commemoration Day of Fallen Soldiers (Finnish: kaatuneitten muistopäivä, Swedish: de stupades dag) is the commemoration day observed in Finland on the third Sunday of May for the soldiers killed in the Winter War and Finnish Civil War 1918.[1] After 1940 it was also the day of commemoration of the soldiers killed in the Continuation War and the Lapland War. There were also members of Lotta Svärd, who also were victims of war serving in uniforms on the front. Nowadays the day also commemorates Finnish soldiers killed in United Nations peacekeeping missions.[2]

Commemoration Day of Fallen Soldiers
Kaatuneitten mp Vihti 17.5.2020.jpg
Commemoration Day of Fallen Soldiers in Vihti in 2020.
Observed byFinland
DateThird Sunday in May
2021 dateMay 16  (2021-05-16)
2022 dateMay 15  (2022-05-15)
2023 dateMay 21  (2023-05-21)
2024 dateMay 19  (2024-05-19)
Frequencyannual

The idea of the day was raised in the bishops' meeting in April 1940. They made a proposal of the day on 19 May. Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim as the war time supreme commander, ordered on 1 May 1940, not to celebrate 16 May 1940 as the victory of the Senate of Finland in the Finnish Civil War, but to have a Commemoration Day of Fallen Soldiers for soldiers of both sides of the war and also the Winter War.

The day is a religious one, which includes remembering dead soldiers in the local grave yards after church services.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Kaatuneitten muistopäivä" (in Finnish). veteraaniperinne.fi. Archived from the original on 10 July 2011. Retrieved 14 June 2011.
  2. ^ "Kaatuneitten muistopäivä, toukokuun 3. sunnuntai" (in Finnish). Yle. Retrieved 25 May 2015.