Friday, March 28, 2008
Our day in Philadelphia
I have attached three photos that are of special interest to me. The first one is of the house in which Betsy Ross lived. Sue and I had a wonderful visit to this place. Although the audio self guided tour was informative, it did not compare to the portrayal of Betsy by a young woman who we visited with for some time. She played the part extremely well we thought. She talked about her parent's displeasure when she chose to marry an Anglican instead of a Quaker. For this she was excommunicated but she said she did not much care. She also talked about her fear that if the Continental Army were to lose, then she could have faced fierce reprisals from the British Army and possibly also from her Loyalist neighbors. Our visit to this house was for us the highlight of our day in Philadelphia.
The second photo is of Independence Hall. We took the tour. I was struck with the commitment to a vision our forefathers demonstrated. Failure would surely have resulted in death for them all. Their belief in their cause overshadowed any risks. Reminds me of the adage I often quote. "Risk should not be evaluated solely on the basis of the likehood of success but on the worthiness of its goal." Washington, Franklin, Adams, and the others certainly lived by that axiom. At the same time I could not help but wonder about the thousands of United Empire Loyalists who also lived in these parts. Thousands of them moved north to Nova Scotia. What caused one group to believe so adamantly in freedom and the shedding of the British yoke of oppression and what caused many others to be willing to endure it, is a mystery to me.
The third picture is of a framed prayer I saw in the Washington Memorial Chapel at Valley Forge. You may need to magnify it in order to be visible. It seemed to me to be a beautiful prayer and one we would do well to pray in our day.
That is enough for today. I am still not feeling very well physically and have limited energy. All the walking we did today kind of tired me out. Now for a good night of sleep and travel tomorrow to New York.