Saturday, June 14, America celebrated Flag Day. On Monday, 65 immigrants from more than 30 countries did more than just pledge allegiance to the flag. They took the oath of citizenship.
Mystic Seaport hosted the naturalization ceremony. Seaport President Steve White said of the museum, “We tell the story of our country’s maritime heritage, which includes the stories of immigration.” White adds, “In all likelihood, earlier generations immigrated to the United States by sea. Coming by sail, by steam or by power.”
The Honorable Donna F. Martinez, United States Magistrate Judge, administered the oath of allegiance to the new American citizens.
“It’s an oath of allegiance, and it then becomes the oath of citizenship when the new citizens are conferred that status,” says Ethan Enzer from U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services.
“They basically swear their allegiance to the United States, and in front of a US District Court Judge, and that becomes a promise,” says Enzer.
Dini Harsono is from Indonesia. Monday, she was one of 65 to take the oath of allegiance. “It’s not something light, somebody really needs to read through it to really understand the meaning,” says Harsono. She says becoming a citizen is like taking the next step in living in the United States.
“I think its just to be part of the culture of the country of where I’ve been living,” says Harsono. “I’m really looking forward to all the opportunities that the country is going to offer, and what I can do for the country.”
Judge Martinez invited children at the ceremony to the podium to help lead in the pledge of allegiance to the flag. Mystic Seaport Events Manager Sharon Brouillard sang the National Anthem.
Between nine and 10 thousand immigrants become U.S. citizens in Connecticut each year.