Happy 4th of July!
I truly hope that, in spite of the challenges we are still facing because of the Coronavirus, you are able to have an enjoyable celebration of the founding of our nation. Although we will not be able to have all of the same festivities we usually do this year, there are still many ways we can honor our country. We can have small gatherings, make prudent use of fireworks, and employ patriotic decorations and forms of entertainment to name just a few. But there’s one that, regardless of whether our circumstances inhibit us or not, we should never overlook-prayer.
Each time we recite the Pledge of Allegiance we declare that we are “one nation under God”. We have done so since President Eisenhower added this line to it in 1956. Part of patriotism for Americans has pretty much always admitted that, even as members of a country as great as ours, as a whole we are subject to an authority that is greater than our own. We are under God, not on equal footing with Him. We Americans live in a democratic country, but ultimately the entire cosmos and all of creation exists in a kingdom where God is the king. We are His subjects. So if we wish to really honor the United States next weekend and each year when the Fourth of July comes around, in addition to making sure we have all of the appropriate supplies for our parties, and, or, get to the awesome fireworks displays on time, we should pause for a few moments out of a sense of reverence and gratitude to God for the great country He has given us and also to offer some prayers for those who have dedicated or given up their lives to realize the part of God’s plan we know as the establishment and the well-being of the United States of America.
In Him, Fr. D