The Do’s and Don’ts of Thanksgiving

As Thanksgiving weekend approaches in the U.S. you may have received suggestions on how to prepare for the celebration, from guest lists, menus and centerpieces to football schedules. You may also have seen one of the many lists of “Don’ts” being circulated in the media.

“Don’t be the relative that brings the uninvited guest.” “Don’t talk politics.” “Don’t offer to bring a dish and then show up with something completely different.” “Don’t serve jellied cranberry sauce.”

It seems like reasonable advice except for the last one, jellied cranberry sauce from a can is a tradition in my family!

However, there is truly no wrong way to celebrate Thanksgiving if true gratitude to the Source of all of our blessings is expressed. “The grateful heart is not only the greatest virtue but the parent of all others,” said Cicero.

Gratitude changes everything. Our very happiness depends on our ability to be grateful.

We live such busy and distracted lives that the habit of thankfulness may be missed. We need to train ourselves to be thankful. The celebration of Thanksgiving DOES give us the wonderful reminder that we need. “THINK – THANK” are two words needed to prepare for our Thanksgiving holiday. When we stop to think, we will stop to thank.

Now thank we all our God

With heart and hands and voices,

Who wondrous things hath done

In whom His world rejoices,

Who, from our Mother’s arms

Hath blessed us on our way

With countless gifts of love,

And still is ours today.

Martin Rinkart


Beth Fanta, IOKDS Spiritual Life Director

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