A court date is set (aka swearing-in ceremony). Court is called to order and the Hearing for Petitioners takes place. The Oath of Allegiance is recited, there is a Statement of the Court, then the Pledge of Allegiance is made. Court is adjourned, Certificates are distributed, and we have new United States Citizens—plus always punch and cookies following the Ceremony!

Two of our adult refugees studied persistently and thoroughly enough to pass the test and become citizens! Once they became citizens, their children under 18 years of age also became citizens, so we now have ten new United States Citizens in our midst! (In these two families, some children are over 18 years old who must take their own test, and some were born here in the United States.) 

- Stephanie Sepate

We’re definitely observing this special day on September 17th! It’s also National Constitution Day. Double the merriment!

Cause to celebrate stems so close to the heart with our Burundi families working so diligently on their English and United States Civics. Even more cause to celebrate: we have two more U.S. citizens, Marceline and Emmanuel, whose swearing in took place July 25th.

The Naturalization Ceremony is a powerful ceremony, and the Oath of Allegiance that so many from a myriad of countries must recite when becoming citizens is a reminder of their new loyalty to our country and its constitution. It drives to the core what we, United States Citizens, should do well to remember more frequently. We are all in this country together and it’s such a wonderful reminder of “why”.

Consider a special celebration of your own or read some of our special history. Be proud to be a United States Citizen just like our Burundi-Americans! Including treats, of course!

Emmanuel and Marceline above. 

-Stephanie Sepate

Citizenship Test

A Cause for Celebration

What Exactly Are We Celebrating?

Welcome to our Newest American Citizens!

The ripple effect is taking place with our Burundi refugees. Venancia took her Oath of Citizenship on August 29th, 2014. With that, three of her minor children also became citizens the same day. Gilbert, her oldest son, had already become a citizen earlier in the year.

Tarcise celebrated July 4th, 2015, Independence Day, as a United States Citizen.  His swearing-in ceremony took place on June 26th. Congratulations, Tarcise!

How exciting! Imana Ishimwe!

Oath of Allegiance

I, (state your name), hereby declare on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state or sovereignty, or whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform noncombatant services in the armed forces of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by law; and that I take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion, SO HELP ME GOD.