American War Mothers
Initiation Ritual


Opening Ceremonies

Only members in good standing are permitted to vote or have voice in the meeting, although visitors and guests may attend.
The Sergeant-at-Arm.r shall see that the Altar, Altar Cloth and Bible are in proper place, and that the Charter is prominently displayed at all business meetings.
The President will call the meeting to order with one rap of the gavel.
The Chaplain opens the Bible and returns to her chair.
Two raps—chapter rises.
Presentation of colors.
Three raps—chapter is seated.
Mothers, we are again privileged to meet to honor the valor and courage of our beloved sons and daughters.
They served, fought and suffered and many of them died to uphold our national honor, in order to hasten the day when the Master’s words, "Peace be unto you,’ shall rule the world.
Here we renew our pledge of loyalty to our God, our Country and our Flag.
The chapter will rise and the Americanism Chairman will lead us in the Pledge to the Flag.
Two raps (the Chairman steps forward, faces the flag and, with heart salute, leads the assembly in the Pledge to the Flag, then steps back to her chair).
Song, "Star Spangled Banner" or "America."
The Chaplain will lead us in Prayer.
The Chaplain advances to the Altar.
Our Heavenly Father, we thank Thee for all the blessings that are ours—and for Thy watchful care over us.
We thank Thee for our great nation, its plenty and security; for the liberties and opportunities handed down to us by our forefathers. And because of these may we be inspired by high ideals and devoted to great purposes for we know that tighteousness in the hearts of a people exalts a nation.
We pray that Thy love take control of our hearts that we may be able to pray for peace that will be a blessing to all, our friends as well as our enemies.
We pray that men of Divine wisdom be placed in positions of power and influence who will bring the Spirit of the Almighty God into all walks of life, and that Peace may rule in the councils of all nations and the hearts of all men everywhere. Amen.
This prayer to be followed by the collect in unison.
Keep us, O God, from pettiness: Let us be large in thought, in word, in deed.
Let us be done with fault-finding, and leave off self-seeking.
May we put away all pretense, and meet each other face to face without self-pity and without prejudice.
May we never be hasty in judgment, and always generous.
Teach us to put into ad ion our better impulses, straightforward and unafraid.
Let us take time for all things: make us grow calm, serene and gentle.
Grant we may realize it is the little things that create differences: that in the big things of life we are as one.
And may we strive to touch and to know the great common human heart of us all, and oh,
Lord God, let us not forget to be kind.
Chaplain returns to station.
Three raps.
I now declare the chapter opened for the transaction of business.

Reception of New Members

The new member (or members) will be escorted to the Altar by the Sergeant-at-Arms.
President (addressing the chapter):
We have with us Mrs …, whose son (Sons or daughters) participated in the activities of wartime and was honorably discharged (or still in service).
She desires to become an active member of Chapter of the American War Mothers.
President (to new member):
The object of this Association of American War Mothers, to which we welcome you as a member, is to affiliate the mothers of sons and daughters who have served, or are serving, in the Armed Forces of the United States or its allies during wartime.
To keep sacred the tie that binds together the mothers who gave their own blood and energy for our country’s honor and the world’s peace.
You will signify your desire to join in our work by repeating with me the American’s Creed.
Two raps—chapter rises.

Raise your right hand and repeat after me: I believe in the United States of America ... as a Government of the people ... by the people, ... for the people; ... whose just powers are derived … from the consent of the governed; ... a democracy in a republic; ... a sovereign nation ... of many soveireign states; a perfect union, ... one and inseparable; … established upon thos principles … of freedom, ... equality, justice, ... and humanity ... for which American patriots ... sacrificed their lives ... and fortunes.
I therefore believe ... it is my duty ... to my country ... to love it; ... to support its constitution; ... to obey its laws; ... to respect its flag; ... and to defend it ... against all enemies.
Three raps—chapter is seated.
The insignia we wear is a golden circle in color of blue as true and endless as a mother’s love.
On our shield is your star and my star—the star that you and I followed through all the darkness of the struggle just before the dawn of the day of peace.
As a member of this organization you now have a right to wear our insignia and flower.
Our Chaplain will ask God’s blessing on this new association.
Two raps—chapter rises.
Prayer by Chaplain:
Our Father, bless this union of women and bless each one who adds strength of her character and courage to ours.
May we be an influence in teaching and living the principles of Liberty, Truth and Democracy.
May we add our influence to those who are striving to protect our country from wrong and who pray for peace among all nations.
Bless our new member (or members) and may she (or they) find in our chapter only love and good will in the promotion of its work. Amen.
The President introduces and welcomes the new member or members.
Three raps—the chapter is seated.

Madam Sergeant-at-Arms, you will please escort Mrs … to her place.
Music may be used whenever it is appropriate.


Closing Ceremonies

The hour has come for us to close our chapter meeting.
May we part with grateful hearts for the pleasures of our association and with renewed hope for an international understanding that will bring all nations into peaceful accord.
The Chaplain will dismiss us with Prayer.
Two raps.
Chaplain advances to Altar.
Divine Father, we invoke Thy blessing upon us as patriotic mothers and agents of peace, of all nations.
May our country remain a great and splendid example of liberty and justice, exemplified with wisdom that will be a lasting monument in the sight of the world.
O Lord, protect us all the days of our life, that when the shadows lengthen and the evening comes and the busy day is hushed, the fever of life is over and our work is done; then in Thy mercy grant us a safe lodging and a holy rest and peace at last.
Chaplain closes Bible.
The colors will be retired.
Two raps.
Colors are retired.
The meeting is adjourned.