Dear Sacred Heart and St. Mary,
Many blessings to you all this Thanksgiving week! Fr. Ginu will be visiting a friend for his first American Thanksgiving and will be gone Wed-Fri. I will have the morning Masses at both parishes Thanksgiving Day and then will be with family through Saturday. We will not have our morning Mass at Sacred Heart on Friday, November 26th.
Thanksgiving is a national holiday that flows from a central tenant of our Christian faith- our ability to give thanks is the marker of our spiritual health. It marks our awareness of God’s providential presence and our ongoing trust. Once at a school Mass I asked what it meant when we said we believe in Jesus. One little girls answered by saying this: “To believe in Jesus means to believe He has done wonderful things and He will do wonderful things for me.” Thanksgiving then roots us in that reality of Jesus having done and promising to continue to do wonderful things.
This is what allowed St. Paul to write these words from a prison cell: Philippians 4:4-7: “Rejoice in the Lord always. I shall say it again: rejoice! Your kindness should be known to all. The Lord is near. Have no anxiety at all, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God. Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” Even there Paul could rejoice because even there he was in the providential care of God. May this Thanksgiving root all of us more fully in that reality. I want to leave us with a few quotes from the saints who share their wisdom with us.
- “In all created things discern the providence and wisdom of God, and in all things give Him thanks.” – St. Teresa of Avila
- “No duty is more urgent than that of returning thanks.” – St. Ambrose
- “Prayer is an aspiration of the heart. It is a simple glance directed to Heaven. It is a cry of gratitude and love in the midst of trial as well as joy.” –St. Therese Lisieux
- “O my God, let me remember with gratitude and confess to thee thy mercies toward me.” –St. Augustine of Hippo
- “Remember the past with gratitude. Live the present with enthusiasm. Look forward to the future with confidence.” –St. John Paul II
- “The secret of happiness is to live moment by moment and to thank God for what He is sending us every day in His goodness.” – St. Gianna Beretta Molla
- “Thank God ahead of time.”
- “Gratitude is the first sign of a thinking, rational creature.” –Bl. Solanus Casey