Date: September 28, 2021
There was so much right about yesterday’s lunchtime event. The invitation was to give just twenty minutes of your life to attend to a really important issue. The setting was Scott Lounge, immediately after or before lunch. The issue was the resolution from Executive Council to lobby for “Lift Every Voice and Sing” to be the national hymn. The format was to listen to Lindsey Warburton from the Office of Government Relations and to Marty Wheeler Burnett, D.Min. to talk about the hymn. The result is that we are all persuaded to do our part to lobby our representatives to make this our national hymn.
I want to thank the leadership of the Seminarians of Color Union (SOCU). Herschel Wade ’23 and Janettarose L. Greene ’23 worked hard to bring this program together. They in their turn thanked the participants and organizers. It was an important, focused event.
This movement to create a national hymn is so right. Flags, national anthems, national symbols – these do not fall out of the sky. They are human constructs that represent certain values. SOCU is simply saying: the time has come for the African American story to be recognized as part of our national symbols. This remarkable hymn, written in honor of President Lincoln, should be rightly acclaimed and acknowledged as part of the story of the United States of America.
The Very Rev. Ian S. Markham, Ph.D.
Dean and President