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It is great to celebrate the Fourth of July and consider the blessings and freedoms that we enjoy.

A few years ago my wife and I visited Independence Hall in Philadelphia. We entered the Assembly Room where the Declaration of Independence was crafted and the Constitution was adopted. As we entered the Assembly Room, we sensed a very reverent feeling in the room, similar to entering a church, as we recognized the significance of the events that transpired there in 1787. Probably no other room in the United States has been the scene of such political courage and wisdom as occurred here. We observed the chair where George Washington presided, which is engraved with a sun on the top of it. The guide described various articles in the room including the spectacles belonging to Benjamin Franklin on the desk where he was seated.

After vigorous debate and compromise, the Constitution was adopted, providing the wonderful blessings and advantages that we have today as citizens of our country. Following the adoption of the Constitution, Benjamin Franklin stated words to the effect: “I have often reflected on the sun on George Washington’s chair and wondered if it was a rising sun or a setting sun. Today I know it is a rising sun”.

The Constitution is precious and too often we take for granted the blessings that are ours. For special reading, you might enjoy the book ‘Seven Miracles that Saved America’ which describes outstanding miracles preserving our freedom and democracy. I especially like the chapters ‘The Miracle of a Summer Fog’, ‘The Miracle of the Battle of Midway’, and ‘The Miracle of the Constitution’. The book is available at the library in book form and also on DVD.

Living here in Rexburg and having taught at Madison High School, I have seen many examples of people who are outstanding citizens and impact our lives for good. Additionally, each of us can show our gratitude for living in this great free land by doing things such as: Thanking a veteran for his service, displaying the Stars and Stripes on the Fourth of July and Flag Day, supporting positive community events, protecting our environment, volunteering to help at your child’s school.

It is particularly great to live in this area and enjoy the freedoms provided by the Constitution.

Bill Moss of Rexburg