In 1893, a young English professor at Wellesley College traveled cross-country to teach in Colorado. She viewed the “alabaster city” of Chicago’s World Fair and the “fruited plains” of the Midwest with awe and wonder. Inspired by the journey, Katherine Lee Bates wrote a poem later retitled, “America the Beautiful.”
Over the past months, a stanza of the hymn has taken on additional meaning.
May God thy gold refine,
Till all success be nobleness,
And ev’ry gain divine.
In my lifetime, our nation has made progress towards racial equality, but we still have a long way to go. Join me in a prayer for our country:
God mend your every flaw.
Confirm you soul in self-control,
your liberty in law.