Troy Exchange Club presents new Freedom Shrine

Published 11:00 pm Friday, August 17, 2012

Members of Charlie’s Angels ‘present the colors’ at a re-dedication ceremony at noon on Thursday at Murphree Park. The Troy Exchange Club presented the city with a new Freedom Shrine at pavilion.

The Troy Exchange Club held a re-dedication event Thursday that unveiled a new Freedom Shrine at the pavilion at Murphree Park.

With the assistance of the Troy Recreation Department, which handled the construction of the shrine, the Exchange Club presented the city with a new series of copies of the original historical documents that represent the freedoms enjoyed by American Citizens.

The Freedom Shrine originated from the Freedom Train, said Jack Norton, program leader.

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“The Freedom Train toured the nation in 1947 carrying an exhibit of famous ‘documents of liberty,’ including the United States Constitution and Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address,” he said.

“The tour was conceived to give Americans the opportunity to reflect on the meaning of American citizenship. The documents included were carefully chosen to exemplify the beginnings of our nation and other important United States turning points.”

Among the other documents are The Northwest Ordinance, which set up public education in America, the Monroe Doctrine, Franklin Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms Speech and Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech.

The Rev. Rick Hayes, pastor of Hephzibah Baptist Church in Troy, was the guest speaker for the re-dedication service.

Hayes said the Freedom Shrine was dedicated with the hopes that its presence will stand as a reminder of the ancient path that established a mighty nation.

“This is a path that has a rich heritage and one that has led to freedom and blessing,” he said.

“It is a path that was laid on sound principles for a great people to travel. It is a path that insured a sound future that would extend to future generations. It is a path that called its people to service and sacrifice and one that has been marked with the blood of its patriots and heroes of every generation. This path has been well worn and battle scared.”

Hayes said that the Freedom Shrine has been placed to honor the Path Maker, the God of Glory and those who have gone before.

“We are called to serve those around us,” he said. “We are to be faithful to preserve the sound principle of blessings for future generations. So, may this Memorial Shrine call people to ponder the ancient and good way and may we all find rest for our souls.”