Sandra Day O'Connor

Winthrop Reading at the Ronald Reagan National Memorial Service

delivered 12 June 2004, National Cathedral, Washington, D.C.

Audio AR-XE mp3 of Address


[AUTHENTICITY CERTIFIED: Text version below transcribed directly from audio]

This is a reading from a sermon delivered in 1630 by the Pilgrim leader John Winthrop, who was aboard the ship the Arbella on his way from England to the Massachusetts Bay Colony. The "City [upon a] Hill" passage was referenced by President Reagan in several notable speeches.

Now the only way to provide for our posterity, is to follow the counsel of Micah, to do justly, to love mercy, to walk humbly with our God.

We must delight in each other; make others' conditions our own; rejoice together, mourn together, labor and suffer together, always having before our eyes our commission and community in the work, as members of the same body.

The Lord will be our God, and delight to dwell among us, as his own people.

For we must consider that we shall be as a city upon a hill. The eyes of all people are upon us.

So that if we shall deal falsely with our God in this work we have undertaken, and so cause him to withdraw his present help from us, we shall be made a story and a by-word through the world.

Research Note: O'Connor's reading is an abridged excerpt from Winthrop's "A Model of Christian Charity." For the complete text, see:

See also: Margaret Thatcher's Video Eulogy for Ronald Reagan

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Page Updated: 7/31/22

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