Happy Thanksgiving! Yes, Thanksgiving Thursday is at the door! We are entering a festive season. With the unusual temperature variations this month, Thanksgiving brings lots of joy and fun with good family fellowship. The spirit of giving and sharing is around us. Beginning Thanksgiving Day, November 24th, you will see our St. Matthias Giving Tree project with traditional as well as online methods of giving to the needy. Our St. Vincent de Paul Society and our Youth group SMYLE Youth group have already collected food for the Franklin Food Bank.
In the rush for consumerism soon after Thanksgiving Day, (with Black Friday, Cyber Monday, etc), it is heartening to see how “Giving Tuesday” – a global day of giving fueled by the power of social media and collaboration – is becoming more popular. Giving Tuesday celebrates the charitable season, when many focus on their holiday and end-of-year giving. Last year our School and the Parish, had two separate but ambitious goals for Giving Tuesday. The Church promoted the “Spiritual Tech Connect” campaign for updating our media capability and reached half the goal. We will continue Part Two of the same goal so that we can complete that project this year and enhance the worship experience with the help of the media. The goal of our School is also to continue the modernization of student furniture and common spaces as well as to expand our new reading and writing programs to the upper grades. See page 7 for more details.
When we recognize that God is the one who has been blessing us and preserving us in this life, our thanksgiving should be directed primarily to this loving God. So why not begin the Thanksgiving Day with the Holy Eucharist? Most welcome to join our 8 am Mass this Thursday and then we will feel the touch of God as we get busy into the hectic pace of Thanksgiving activities. Here’s a nice prayer we all can use for Thanksgiving:
“We thank and praise You, our Heavenly Father, for establishing and preserving our nation in freedom, for giving us a rich land in which to dwell, and for providing us with an abundance of the fruits of the earth. In order that we might live in peace and be good stewards of all that You provide, grant us Your grace to recognize Your gifts and to live as good citizens. We thank You for Your great love in sending Your Son Jesus to be our Savior, and in calling us out of our rebellion into fellowship with Him. We give You thanks that You have done this apart from any worthiness in us.
Forgive us for those times when we grew complacent and took Your gifts for granted. You are the source of all good, and we thank you for the simple things that bring us joy. We thank you not only for the good times, but also for those times of uncertainty and anxiety because they have deepened our faith in you. Thank you for bringing good out of what we considered as tragedies in our lives. Bless the food that we are sharing. May we have a good time with all. Renew our spirits and fill our hearts with your peace and joy so that we will live in true fellowship with everyone in our families and in our communities, and share with those in need. We surrender our prayers of thanksgiving and all our needs, desires and dreams into your hands through the prayer Jesus taught us, Our Father …. “
A blessed time of Thanksgiving to you with your family and all your dear ones.
Your brother in Christ,
Fr. Abraham Orapankal