By Ferhat Ymeri/
Thank you Almighty God, the Most Merciful,
For saving the Albanian people during history.
We humbly give our thanks to you, Oh, merciful God,
for delivering us from the waves of death and evil.
We praise you for bringing us to safety:
To the United States of America – the beacon of hope,
freedom and equality.
We praise you, Our Creator, for bringing us into homes
and hearts of kind and generous people who embraced us
with pure hospitality and loving care.
In their friendly faces, we saw your face; in their deeds,
we saw and felt your love in action, and your hidden wisdom.
Oh, All-Knowing God, we thank you, and the missionaries
of your word. They became our new friends and our new family,
our supporters and our mentors. In their face, we saw the face
Of real America!
Not the face of cynicism and indifference, but the face of
courage and humanism.
We, Albanians of the Puget Sound area, as well as
Albanians around the world, say to you:
Thank you America! Thank you for keeping your word
and saving us! Without your courage and determination,
perhaps many of us wouldn’t have been here today to celebrate
the happiest day of the Albanian people:
The Independence Day – Flag Day.
Thank you America for being faithful to your spirit of freedom,
justice, and equality, which, hopefully, will serve as the
foundation for the future of all humanity!
Thank you Almighty God!
Thank you America!
This invocation was given on the occasion of the Albanian Flag Day Celebration, on November 27, 1999,
in Seattle, Washington. Ferhat Ymeri worked as an Albanian interpreter and cultural consultant with
World Relief and several other refugee resettlement agencies in Seattle. In the spring of 1999, Mr. Ymeri
volunteered with The Northwest Medical Teams International (from Portland, Oregon) in Shkoder,
Albania, providing primary health care for the Kosovar refugees.