A New Citizen

Today my husband and went down to the Federal Court House here in Tucson. No, we were not in trouble and neither of us had been called for Jury Duty. We were there for a more joyous occasion. Our friend Anastase was to become a U.S. Citizen.

The ceremony was amazing and something I think every high school student should attend. There were 50 people become citizens from 12 different countries. They had traveled many different paths, being so close to the border there was a good share of Mexicans, there was a Canadian, Sudanese, Iranian, and others. Our friend came to this country as a refuge after escaping the genocide in Rawanda.  After the Oath of Citizenship was administered, we stood for the Pledge of Allegiance. Words that I had taken for granted for so many years never sounded so sweet.

At the end people were allowed to come up and speak either about thier path to citizenship. Friends and family could come up and speak about the new citizens as well.  We heard about the woman who her parents were determined to bring her to the United States. They did not live to see her become a citizen. The man who spoke for his 87 year old Grandmother. She had fled religous persecution in Iran to come to our country.  Some one came up and spoke about Anastase, my husband did as well. They talked about his determination, his good nature, his love of family.

He got up and spoke briefly about his journey to this day. He spoke of his wife and his boys and briefly what they lost when they fled.  Mostly he spoke of peace, the great leveler of all things and what he had found here, It was a wonderful speech. I had my new flip video camera with me and I think I got it all.  If I can upload it I will and post the link. For now check out the pictures on my FB page The ceremony ended with a video of Lee Greenwood singing God Bless the U.S.A. That song always brings tears to my eyes and it did again.

I am so proud of Anastase, his wife Daphrose, and his four boys. Three of them are adults and are working hard to make thier own lives. The youngest was born when they were in South Africa. His name Cadeau, means gift in French and he truly is. They all are and we are proud and blessed that they are our friends.

Congratulations my friends, you are now citizens of one of the greatest countries in the world. Is it perfect? Hell No. But if what I saw today was any indication, we are certainly doing something right.-


2 thoughts on “A New Citizen

  1. Deb says:

    What a joyful event to witness, Elaine! A heartfelt welcome and good wishes to one of our newest citizens!

    • It was Deb and something we will never forget. Michael’s parents have friends who have lived through Hitler, Communism and no living in democracy. I’ve met them, talked to them, been deeply affected by what they have told me. They have all made me appreciate the freedoms we have so much more. However, Anastase and his family have affected us on a whole different level.

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