Sunday, July 03, 2005

She stepped officially through the Golden Door

Sat in Sacrament this morning and listened to a friend of mine. She bore her testimony. Last May she and 5,000 of her new neighbors were presented up, weighed and measured and sworn in as the newest of the United States of America's citizens.

In her heavy accent she articulated that she loved "da Propet Joseph Smit because Got made him to be here and he saw Got and Jesus. I love da Propet." With tear filled eyes she related her thoughts that she would not have the Gospel if "Joseph Smit did nah live in da U.S. because Got blessed this lan for dis purpose." She loves her childhood home but feels God sent her here to bless her family with the Gospel and even though "I gah da really good job and am the manerger of many peoples it doesn mean nothing because I got the Gospel. Dat's all dat madder. My family has da Gospel." She then said that she felt remorse at waiting to apply for citizenship and putting it all off for so long. It never bothered her before that she could not vote, that she could not serve on a jury, and that she had no more legal rights than she had before she came here. "Now dat I am a real ci-izen I can do dose tings and more. I can voe now an I will. When eh comes my turn to be a jury I will go an do my job. I never had da same righs in my homelan. When I tink abou tomorrow I am happy now because I am real now. Before I was jus here an doing my job. I ha da papers an was legal but not a ci-izen. Tomorrow I will be happy."

As the meeting closed the Bishop rose, went to the pulpit and said the following: "In regard to Sister S's good news, I feel remiss that I forgot to celebrate with her back in May. To rectify that I suggest that everyone stay home tomorrow. Do not go to work. Stay with your families and spend the day thinking about Independence and Freedom and what it means to be a real citizen of these United States. Have a picnic. Go to the mountains or the beach. Eat some barbecue. Perhaps someone can find a firework or two to shoot off. Hey, let's make it a celebration! Let's all think of Sister S and her new found liberties." Then in a very hushed whisper as if to himself he said, "It's good. It's fitting." and sat down.

"Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame, With conquering limbs astride from land to land; Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name, Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame. "Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"
- 1883 by Emma Lazarus, appears on the pedestal of the Statue

So here's to my friend. The newest citizen I know. Let's celebrate with her tomorrow. It's good. It's fitting.

add to sk*rt

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