Thursday, November 27th, 2008
The Church of St. Vincent Ferrer wishes you and yours a Happy and Holy Thanksgiving.
This meditation from the Sisters of Life reminds us that God always remains deserving of our first expressions of gratitude.
“In all things, give thanks to God.” – (1 Thes 5:18)
As our nation approaches the great secular holiday of Thanksgiving, let us recall the words of Abraham Lincoln when he instated Thanksgiving as a national holiday in 1863, “as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens.” It is to our Heavenly Father that we owe our thanks for the most precious gift of His Son, Jesus Christ, which He continually gives us in the Eucharist. It is in the Eucharist, which means “thanksgiving,” that Jesus gives us His whole self. He makes Himself completely vulnerable by placing Himself entirely in our hands during the Mass. Here He makes His loving command, to “do this in memory of Me.” He desires us to receive Him intimately and to bring Him to mind, to remember the work by which He redeemed us on the Cross-His greatest gift of love. The more we marvel at His goodness and let it resonate in our hearts, the more the gift of gratitude will naturally spring forth and be a healing balm for us, one that continually nourishes.
The further we enter into the work of praise and thanksgiving, it will be for us a twofold grace: it will lighten our daily struggles and make them more bearable and we will receive a taste of the joy of heaven, where Our Heavenly Father is continuously praised. Even in our thanksgiving, God gives back to us a gift! It is then that we experience the truth of the Prophets’ words: “Make the Lord your joy, and He will give you what your hearts desires.” – (Ps 36:4)
Click here for a great summary of St. Thomas’ teaching on gratitude.