Posted by: Fr Chris | November 27, 2019

GIVING THANKS in 2019

Thanksgiving Day is the one reminder every year that, despite the American model of being self-sufficient, none of us truly  make it on our own. No one goes through life all alone.  No matter if you are a believer or an atheist, it is the one day to stop and be thankful for what we have and for the country we live in.The atheist will just be grateful and that’s that. For the believer, it is the day to acknowledge God’s benevolent mercy and His graces that have brought us safe thus far.

Abraham Lincoln’s Thanksgiving Day Message To Atheists, Humanists and Other Americans | FREEDOM ...

In 1864, while the Civil War was still raging, President Abraham Lincoln set the last Thursday in November as the national day to give thanks. He wrote: a day which I desire to be observed by all my fellow-citizens, wherever they may be, as a day of thanksgiving and praise to Almighty God, the beneficent Creator and Ruler of the Universe. And I do further recommend to my fellow-citizens aforesaid that on that occasion they do reverently humble themselves in the dust and from thence offer up penitent and fervent prayers and supplications to the Great Disposer of Events for a return of the inestimable blessings of peace, union, and harmony throughout the land which it has pleased Him to assign as a dwelling place for ourselves and for our posterity throughout all generations.

He acknowledged God’s generosity to America in a time of war, and pointed out specifically that God ” has largely augmented our free population by Emancipation and by immigration, while He has opened to us new sources of wealth and has crowned the labor of our workingmen in every department of industry with abundant rewards.

1000+ images about The GOOD SHEPHERD on Pinterest | The good shepherd, Sheep and The shepherd

The Bible does not say that having wealth means you are blessed by God – that is a Protestant heresy. But we pray at every Liturgy for an abundance of the fruits of the earth. Christ and the writings of the prophets all emphasize that the poor are God’s special people. So how do we tie that in with a dinner that is one of the biggest of the year? The poverty that God demands is this: We should do what we can so that no one to be hungry or thirsty or naked or homeless or sick or living all alone (Mt 25:3-46). The poverty demanded of the Christian must be the desire to seek before all else the Kingdom of God, which is God’s will and plan for us, which includes love for all creation, a thirst for righteousness, and mercy. Christ promised, “seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things (food and drink and clothing) will be given you besides” (Mt 6:33).

Blessings to You | Neighborhood Unitarian Universalist Church

Above all, this is where we come to give thanks. This Divine Liturgy, any celebration of the Holy Eucharist in any of the Rites of the Church, is the primary place for thanksgiving. The very word “eucharistia” means to be grateful, to rejoice, and to give thanks. For all those taking the time to worship at God’s holy altar for Thanksgiving Day, may we most especially be grateful for our  Church and parish, our faith in Jesus Christ, and above all for the Holy Gifts we will receive today.

On Receiving the Holy Mysteries – The Morning Offering


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