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The Pledge of Allegiance

This week Americans will unfurl their flags and place them in prominent places on their property. The flag is the symbol of our nation, the principles it was founded upon, the freedoms we enjoy, and the costs that have been paid to ensure those principles and freedoms will always be sustained.

United with the flag is our common profession of respect for and loyalty to our republic. It is called the Pledge of Allegiance.

"I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."

This patriotic recitation was first written in 1885 by Union Army Captain George Thatcher Balch and was revised over the years to its present form. The phrase, “one nation under God”, was added to the Pledge of Allegiance in 1954. This addition was the work of our beloved Knights of Columbus. On April 30, 1951, the New York City Board of Directors of the Knights of Columbus adopted a resolution to include the words “under God," in the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance at their Assembly meetings.

Over the next two years the idea spread throughout the nation and the campaign gained momentum. It ultimately reached the U.S. Congress. A resolution to add the words, “under God,” was passed by Congress, and then signed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower on Flag Day, June 14, 1954.

Although long in coming, this was merely an acknowledgement of the perennial spirit of Americans. Once again, the Knights of Columbus were shown to be men of faith who salt the nation with the Spirit of Christ.

As we celebrate July Fourth, the birth of our republic, let us recognize, as George Washington so often stated, that the United States of America is and always will be under the protection of the Providential hand of God.

Our Lady of America, pray for us!

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