Bethlehem Moments: A Proposal (2)

(2nd in a series of posts on Bethlehem Moments)

Gadfly can count on faithful followers remembering his first post on this proposal September 23, right? Seems just like yesterday. Time-sense is so strange in Trumpworld, isn’t it? Ok, take a minute, click “Bethlehem Moments” on the sidebar, and come up to speed.

On September 23 Gadfly was working up to a proposal to add a 30-second vignette on the history of Bethlehem beginning every Council Meeting, an idea that sprang spontaneously like Athena from the brow of Zeus [wonky, must revise in the 2nd draft] during public comment April 17. [Gadfly would like everybody to forget the “30-second” part, but there it is in the minutes, of which Mrs.Kelchner is the incorruptible guardian.]

As far as Gadfly can trace the subconscious rivulets that merged to form this dam-breaking idea, his thinking went like this:

We begin each Council meeting with a prayer and the pledge.


Opening ceremonies can become routine. Something to get over. It’s good to stop for a moment and re-think what we are doing.

So, why?

Because God and Country are — or should be — the source of our values and the context for our decisions, that is, for the work we do at Council. They are the Higher Authority, as it were, to which we hope to align.

But it seemed to me, after four months of regular Council attendance as well as reflections on the character of our hometown, that something was missing in that opening ceremony. Because of who we are, who we profess to be, we were missing an invocation of history.

Gadfly began to feel that we needed to invoke not only God and Country but our local past.

Prayer > Pledge > Past

God > Country > Bethlehem

Yeah, that gives Gadfly a sense of completeness.

Gadfly likes Bethlehem unique.

And he thinks this expanded homage to our power sources would be another way Bethlehem is unique.

Chew on this for a while. More to come. Soon.

One thought on “Bethlehem Moments: A Proposal (2)

  1. With all due respect, I think beginning the meetings with an ‘Invocation’ & Pledge of Allegiance is not a good thing, mostly because it implies a sense of noble purpose & dignity that is not necessarily reflected in what is actually done.

    The invocation often calls on ‘God’ (under one name or another) to ‘bless’ the proceedings of our leaders / government; occasionally there’s a call to respect everyone else’s opinion.

    As for the Pledge, has any other country (besides Nazi German) had people recite a pledge every day? Why would anyone pledge allegiance to a flag that has flown over so many disgraceful actions—from wars of aggression to lynchings to white supremacist rallies—instead of pledging to something that’s for human rights, equality, and an end to repression?

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