On this day in 1775, the Second Continental Congress approves a resolution “that two Battalions of Marines be raised… .”
The first recruitments likely took place in a bar, the Tun Tavern or Conestoga Wagon, and their first battle occurred in the Bahamas.
First, every Marine is a rifleman and all recruits since World War II have learned to recite the Rifleman’s Creed, and this is the final portion of that Creed:
“Before God, I swear this creed. My rifle and myself are the defenders of my country. We are the masters of our enemy. We are the saviors of my life.”
So be it, until victory is America’s and there is no enemy, but peace!”
Next, this is the third and final stanza of The Marines’ Hymn:
Here’s health to you and to our Corps
Which we are proud to serve;
In many a strife we’ve fought for life
And never lost our nerve;
If the Army and the Navy
Ever look on Heaven’s scenes;
They will find the streets are guarded
By The United States Marines.
Motto and Prayer
Semper Fidelis, Latin for “Always Faithful,” has been the Marine Corps motto since 1883. It guides Marines to remain faithful to the mission, to each other, the Corps and our country.
So, it seems the purposes of this motto provide the framework for The Marine’s Prayer:
Almighty Father, whose command is over all and whose love never fails, make me aware of thy presence and obedient to thy will. Keep me true to my best self, guarding me against dishonesty in purpose and deed, and helping me to live so that I can face my fellow Marines, my loved ones, and thee without shame or fear. Protect my family. Give me the will to do the work of a Marine and to accept my share of responsibilities with vigor and enthusiasm. Grant me the courage to be proficient in my daily performance. Keep me loyal and faithful to my superiors and to the duties my country and the Marine Corps have entrusted to me. Make me considerate of those committed to my leadership. Help me to wear my uniform with dignity, and let it remind me daily of the traditions which I must uphold. If I am inclined to doubt, steady my faith; if I am tempted, make me strong to resist; if I should miss the mark, give me courage to try again. Guide me with the light of truth and grant me wisdom by which I may understand the answer to my prayer.