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A Modest Flag Retirement Ceremony - Boy Scout Troop 156

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									                 A Modest Flag Retirement Ceremony

Background and Preparation: A small, modest fire is built and lit in advance, being given
sufficient time to burn down almost to coals. If more than one flag is to be retired, fold
all flags properly except one. Prepare the one not folded for tearing at ceremony.

Scout #1: Please turn off all phones and pagers. The following is a direct quotation from
the beginning of Title 36, Section 176, of the United States Code: “No disrespect should
be shown to the flag of the United States of America;”

Furthermore, Paragraph (K) of this same Title 36, Section 176, states: “The flag, when it
is such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display, should be destroyed in a
dignified way, preferably by burning.”

Please rise.

(Ceremony team enters in silence, displaying unfurled flag to the assembled gathering.)

Scout #2: (Recites entire following prose while flag’s colors are being separated):

I AM A FLAG.
I was born on June 14, 1777.
I am more than cloth just shaped into a design.
I am the refuge of the world’s oppressed people.
I am the silent sentinel of freedom.
I am the emblem of the greatest sovereign nation on earth.
I am the inspiration for which American Patriots gave their lives and fortunes.
I have led your sons into battle from Valley Forge to the blistering desert of the Arabian
Peninsula.
I walked in silence with each of your honored dead to their final resting place beneath the
silent white crosses row upon row.
I have flown through peace and war, strife and prosperity, and amidst it all I have been
respected.

“Old Glory” is my nickname; proudly I wave on high. Honor me, respect me, and defend
me with your lives and your fortunes. Never let my enemies tear me down from my lofty
position lest I never return. Keep alight the fires of patriotism; strive earnestly for the
spirit of democracy. Worship Eternal God and keep His commandments and I shall
remain the bulwark of peace and freedom for all people. For, I AM A FLAG.

(Stop here until the flag’s colors are completely separated; then continue.)

Scout #2: My red stripes symbolize the blood spilled in defense of the glorious nation.
Scout #1: LET US RETIRE THE RED STRIPES. HAND SALUTE! (Red stripes are
now placed on the burning fire.)

Scout #1: TWO!

Scout #2: My white stripes signify the burning tears shed by Americans who lost their
sons.

Scout #1: LET US RETIRE THE WHITE STRIPES. HAND SALUTE! (White stripes
are now placed on the burning fire.)

Scout #1: TWO!

Scout #2: My blue field is indicative of God’s heaven under which we fly. My stars,
clustered together, unify 50 states as one for God and Country.

Scout #1: LET US RETIRE THE BLUE FIELD WITH STARS. HAND SALUTE!
(Blue field with stars are now placed on the burning fire.)

Scout #1: TWO!

Scout #1: Please remain standing for the retiring of the rest of the flags. (The rest of the
flags are placed on the burning fire.)

Scout #1: SCOUT SALUTE!

Scout #2: Plays taps.

Scout #1: TWO!

Scout #1: Please exit in silence remembering the sacrifices made by those who have
fought and continue to fight for our freedom.




REVISED 01/2010

								
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