Did you know Catholics played a vital role in putting “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance?
In this portion of the episode, Ryan Scheel explains how Catholics played a vital role in putting “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance.
“The Knights of Columbus really integrated Catholics into civil society and into America as patriotic. They wanted society to understand that Catholics were just as patriotic and just as devoted to their country,” Scheel explains.
“They helped politicians understand that Catholics were their constituents, and that they were very patriotic, good, tax-paying, law-abiding citizens who would fight to the death to defend this country.
“One of the things that they did as part of this program was petition multiple politicians to get the words “under God” added to the Pledge of Allegiance.”
Listen to Ryan Scheel tell the full story below:
How Catholics Put “Under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance
“In 1951, the Knights of Columbus held their national meeting. They passed a resolution to say ‘under God’ after the word ‘one nation’ at their internal meetings.
“One year later, all Knights councils did this when reciting the Pledge of Allegiance at the beginning of every meeting. So at the next year’s meeting, they said, ‘Let’s get this on a national level. This is great!’
“They then sent letters to the president, vice president, and the speaker of the House, but there was no response. So the following year, they sent a letter to every single member of Congress saying, “We would like to add the words ‘under God’ to the Pledge of Allegiance.
“That year, 17 different legislators in the House of Representatives submitted a bill for its passage, adding the words ‘under God’ to the Pledge of Allegiance.
“In 1954, a joint resolution of congress passed one of those 17 bills. Eisenhower signed it on Flag Day on June 14, 1954.”
Eisenhower this after signing the resolution:
“From this day forward, the millions of our schoolchildren will daily proclaim in every city and town, every village and rural schoolhouse, the dedication of our nation and our people to the Almighty.”
“In this way, we are reaffirming the transcendence of religious faith in America’s heritage and future; in this way we shall constantly strengthen those spiritual weapons which forever will be our country’s most powerful resource, in peace or in war.”