One Nation Under God
The One Nation Under God project was adopted on July 30, 1964, by Exchange leaders seeking to heighten awareness of our rich religious heritage. November, observed nationally as One Nation Under God Month, is a special time of year when Exchangites join together to increase public appreciation of the important roles religious faith and freedom have played in our nation’s history. The aims of the program are to:
- Build greater respect for the Pledge of Allegiance;
- Promote increased use of the Pledge in schools and at public gatherings;
- Combat all efforts to remove the words “under God” from the Pledge;
- Encourage and promote religious services by local churches on Thanksgiving Day or Thanksgiving eve;
- Promote attendance at such services to members and nonmembers alike;
- Prayerfully thank God for the blessings of liberty bestowed on America.
Just as its tongue-twisting title suggests, this popular projects involves the distribution of small 4″ x 6″ United States flags to youngsters at parades, fairs, picnics, school events or other community happenings that generate large crowds. The flags are absolutely free to the children and can make a great souvenir of the occasion.
Developed by the Exchange Club of Galesburg, Ill., the program can be implemented on any occasion which calls for a parade, i.e., Memorial Day, the Fourth of July, Labor Day, Veteran’s Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas or New Year’s Day.
Proudly We Hail
No symbol inspires respect and love of country more than our American flag — the Stars and Stripes. That is why Exchange encourages all Americans to properly fly the flag as an ongoing, highly visible expression of that respect through the Proudly We Hail program. The Proudly We Hail program encourages regular display of the flag by individuals, commercial establishments and industries. To honor them, a specially designed plaque is presented at a club meeting. Every club member can participate in the program because it is the individual member who watches for and nominates potential recipients. This outstanding program promotes Americanism as well as community recognition by the sponsoring Exchange Club.
First, a club must decide to adopt the program. Once this is done, one member is appointed chairperson of the Proudly We Hail selection committee and each and every member of the club is made a committee member. As committee members, Exchangites, during their travels throughout the community, keep a sharp eye out for residences and office buildings where the American flag is regularly flown. Then, record the name and address of the candidate and check to see if the flag is indeed flown every day. When this is established, the name is submitted to the committee chairperson. Each month, one or more candidates are invited to a regular meeting of the club where they are ceremoniously presented with a plaque to display in their home or office.
Exchange’s Freedom Shrine
Exchange would like to see a Freedom Shrine installed in every junior and senior high school in the nation. Freedom Shrines have also found places of honor in universities, libraries, state capitols, airports, city halls and other public places where they can be studied and admired. To view a virtual Freedom Shrine, visit the Virtual Freedom Shrine website, hosted by the Exchange Club of Salem, N.H.
List of Freedom Shrine Documents
The Freedom Shrine is an impressive, permanently mounted collection of 30 of the most important and historic American documents, including the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution of the United States and the Gettysburg Address. They show our nation’s youth the strength and courage of their forefathers by allowing them to read, with their own eyes, the immortal words of inspired Americans who so decisively changed the course of history.
Developed by the National Exchange Club, the Freedom Shrine originated from the Freedom Train that toured the nation in 1947 carrying an exhibit of historic documents. The purpose of the Freedom Shrine is twofold. It puts before young Americans proof that the freedom and greatness we enjoy today were not purchased easily and reminds them that these gifts must be cherished and protected. Painstakingly researched to guarantee absolute authenticity, the 28 historical American documents that comprise the Shrine were carefully chosen to exemplify the beginnings of our nation and those subsequent turning points of importance which shaped our national character and eminence. The documents of the Shrine, although culled from the past, represent foundation stones which permit the present, as we know it, to exist and the future, as we dream it, to be attainable.
Thousands of Shrines have been dedicated throughout the United States and Puerto Rico in universities, libraries, schools, state capitals, city halls and at American outposts scattered throughout the world.