I remember back in High School when I almost committed suicide because I am so depressed about the things that had happened in my life. I am an orphan who had no one to run to and then one day my grandfather sent me our family tree... the Family Tree of the House of Delano and I was surprised to discover who my ancestor was...
I cannot even believe my eyes when I see it, it was Charlemagne or Charles the Great - The Holy Roman Emperor. Carolus Magnus or Karolus Magnus, meaning Charles the Great) (742/747 – 28 January 814) was King of the Franks from 768 to his death. He expanded the Frankish kingdoms into a Frankish Empire that incorporated much of Western and Central Europe. During his reign, he conquered Italy and was crowned Imperator Augustus by Pope Leo III on 25 December 800 as a rival of the Byzantine Emperor in Constantinople. His rule is also associated with the Carolingian Renaissance, a revival of art, religion, and culture through the medium of the Catholic Church. Through his foreign conquests and internal reforms, Charlemagne helped define both Western Europe and the Middle Ages. He is numbered as Charles I in the regnal lists of France, Germany, and the Holy Roman Empire.
The son of King Pippin the Short and Bertrada of Laon, he succeeded his father and co-ruled with his brother Carloman I. The latter got on badly with Charlemagne, but war was prevented by the sudden death of Carloman in 771. Charlemagne continued the policy of his father towards the papacy and became its protector, removing the Lombards from power in Italy, and waging war on the Saracens, who menaced his realm from Spain. It was during one of these campaigns that Charlemagne experienced the worst defeat of his life, at Roncesvalles (778). He also campaigned against the peoples to his east, especially the Saxons, and after a protracted war subjected them to his rule. By forcibly converting them to Christianity, he integrated them into his realm and thus paved the way for the later Ottonian dynasty.
Today he is not only regarded as the founding father of both French and German monarchies, but as the father of Europe: his empire united most of Western Europe for the first time since the Romans, and the Carolingian renaissance encouraged the formation of a common European identity.
Pierre Riché reflects:
“ . . . he enjoyed an exceptional destiny, and by the length of his reign, by his conquests, legislation and legendary stature, he also profoundly marked the history of western Europe.
Who would not be astounded by such an ancestor and from that point I concluded that I can never waste my life with surrendering from life's aggression for I have a honorable and great ancestor and they would not be proud of me that way.
Why is it important to know your ancestry? Simple because it gives you one of the essence and purpose of your existence. In your life at least try to search for your ancestors and take pride in what they are and what role they have played in this world.
This is also why today, I strive to make a difference beyond myself... to help people make a difference and to realize their destiny in this world. Thanks to my grandfather, my Aunt Dorrit, Uncle Robert...
With great thanks as well above all to God... to my kids John Dwight, Helen Cleodara, and David Jr.