Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays: family and friends connect around a festive meal; people take time to give thanks for blessings; homeless folks are fed as they deserve to be fed, and it’s the one holiday commercialism hasn’t found a way to spoil. The fact that Abraham Lincoln proclaimed Thanksgiving Day a national holiday in the middle of the Civil War seems especially relevant at this time of war in Afghanistan and distressing unemployment at home.
Lincoln gave reasons for a day of gratitude which are still pertinent: “For bounties which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the Source from which they come . . . They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God. . . . . It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged with one heart and voice by the whole American people. . . . I recommend that we also commend to God’s tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in this lamentable civil strife . . . and fervently implore the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of our nation and to restore it . . . to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility and union” (Proclamation of President Abraham Lincoln, October 3, 1863).
At the monastery, we celebrate a Thanksgiving Eucharist in gratitude for countless blessings of faith, families, friends, Oblates, volunteers, benefactors, and so much more! A blessed Thanksgiving!
By Katherine Kraft, OSB
Mystery, Beauty, Adventure
5 years ago