A Thanksgiving message

I heard this today in a WUWM compilation of snippets from Thanksgiving-themed services of various faiths and denominations. Having been raised by pretty devout Catholics and attending the required weekly mass plus extraneous holy days, I was pretty glad Thanksgiving wasn’t one of them. Although it more or less started out as a feast of “Thank God we’re not dead” and therefore has a somewhat religious origin, we don’t really celebrate it as a religious holiday the way we do Christmas and Easter, which is kind of strange considering the latter two originated in pagan traditions.

Nevertheless, since the U.S. and Canada are—as far as I know—the only countries with a national holiday for giving thanks, I consider Thanksgiving a very “New World” kind of day, and I like how this piece (Thank you, Google!) speaks to American ideals and simultaneously reminds us that it is we who need to protect them:

We are the stewards of America,
her ideals and institutions, her cities and natural beauty.

We are entrusted to understand America’s past and guide
her future.

To create an ever more just America that is secure and free,
abundant and caring for all her inhabitants.

We are thankful for the freedom to worship.

We are thankful for the freedom to speak our minds.

We are thankful for the freedom to change our minds.

We are thankful for the freedom to chart our lives.

We are thankful for the freedom to work for a better world.

We are thankful for the freedom to celebrate this day.

In America, each of us is entitled to a place at the table.

Copyright 2007 American Jewish Committee
“America’s Table: A Thanksgiving Reader 2007”