Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
On July 4, 1776, the United States of America proclaimed its independence from England by signing the Declaration of Independence. While the signing of the Declaration itself was not completed until August, the Fourth of July holiday is seen as the official anniversary of U.S. independence. Although Philadelphians marked the first anniversary of independence in 1777 with spontaneous celebrations in the streets of Philadelphia, the first recorded use of the name “Independence Day” wasn’t until 1791 and “Independence Day” celebrations only be- came common after the War of 1812. By the 1870’s Independence Day had become the most important secular holiday on the American calendar and has transformed into what is known as the 4th of July.