“Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness”

2 Timothy 4:7 – Jill A. Kirchner-Rose, MDIV, DMIN – On the Fourth of July, we generally celebrate our Founding Fathers: George Washington, Alexander Hamilton, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, to name a few. This Fourth of July, however, I invite us to honor those from the margins who are not generally associated with this holiday, but who played major roles in helping our country form “a more perfect union.” I invite us to honor those who believed from the depths of their souls that we are, indeed, “endowed by our Creator with certain inalienable rights that among them are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” This Fourth of July we will celebrate the powerful witness of Clara Barton (life), the Tuskegee Airmen (liberty), and Ellen DeGeneres (the pursuit of happiness). May we affirm that diversity in gender, ethnicity, and sexual identity is at the heart of our nation’s ideals of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.