28 new citizens take oath of allegiance Wednesday at Harmony Hall

28 new citizens take oath of allegiance Wednesday at Harmony Hall

Twenty-eight new citizens pose on the steps of Harmony Hall following the Naturalization Ceremony Wednesday morning in Kinston. Photo by Linda Whittington / Neuse News

The United States of America grew by 28 Wednesday morning.

For the 14th consecutive year, the Lenoir County Historical Association hosted the Naturalization Ceremony and Granting of Citizenship at Harmony Hall. Twenty-eight new citizens took an oath of allegiance to “absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state or sovereignty.”

U.S. Rep. Walter B. Jones has attended and participated in all 14 ceremonies. He said it was special to be a part of the proceedings.

“This is almost spiritual because of my love of America,” Jones said following the ceremony. “To see people come from foreign countries that love America so much they want to be part of America and then follow the process, it’s incredible.”

Three years ago, Rev. Jason McKnight, a former Canadian citizen and the minister of Kinston’s Grace Fellowship Church, took the same oath of allegiance on July 4, 2015. He was the keynote speaker for Wednesday’s ceremony.

“I love to welcome people, so it was a joy to be part of their welcome today,” McKnight said. “It was super special to me.”

The ceremony was recorded live on the Neuse News Facebook page at Facebook.com/NeuseNews; readers can watch it at their convenience.

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Photo gallery from Wednesday's Naturalization Ceremony at Harmony Hall

Photo gallery from Wednesday's Naturalization Ceremony at Harmony Hall

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