Twilight Twitches

fetscherDear Family,
On Thursday, once again we celebrate the national Day of Thanks. The history of the event is worth a trip to Wikipedia if you're a history buff. From the Pilgrims in 1621, through various shapes and sizes over time, the day worked its way into our national culture. You wouldn't think there would be so much discussion surrounding a celebration we all take for granted.

I read in one place that the head of Federated Stores (Macy's among others) urged President Franklin Roosevelt to push the date a little earlier so the Christmas shopping season could start sooner. It used to be that it was in poor taste to start the Christmas selling before Thanksgiving. Imagine that. I saw Christmas stuff out this year before Halloween. It certainly begs the questions, "Thanks to whom?" and, "For what?"

Well, we know the 'whom' and the 'what.' We will be thanking the Lord together here at the parish at 10:00 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day. That's the only Mass we will have.

One thing dawned on me as I "pondered" this Twitch, namely how easy - and how wrong - it would be to be to let any cynicism creep into our celebration, e.g., cracks about shopping, etc.
Much in our present culture challenges us. Whether it's commercialism reigning, or public discourse devolving, it might seem hard to evoke an attitude of gratitude. So, this is something that requires some special attention on our part.

Between now and Thursday would you join me in taking a little personal quiet time to think about the what we are grateful for?
Do it in a different place or a different chair, just so your mind and heart know there really is something a little different about this project.

Our "what?" lists will differ a lot from each other, but what a wonderful thing to have in common, a shared sense of gratitude. By the way, that's the perfect sense to have when we gather to celebrate the Eucharist.

Personally, as I have been working my way through this Twitch over a couple of days, I find more negatives than I thought floating around in my consciousness, and probably some more in my subconscious as well. The simple explanation for that might be that there are many 'negatives' competing for my attention in the public news, etc. The problem with that is sometimes the negatives make the positives harder to see.

Maybe the first thing on my personal list is to know that I have the power to turn off the TV. In other words, I'm realizing I need to make a specific decision to push aside the negatives to make room for the positives.

I'm going to work on lengthening the list. I hope you will too.

Because... I'm going to bring that list with me to the Mass on Thanksgiving. Bring your list, too. We'll make the lists part of the offering we bring to the altar for Love Thy Neighbor - a feeding program for the homeless with whom Marcia and Barry Hogan are faitfhul workers. They can bring our contribution (without the lists.) My heartfelt prayer is that the Lord blesses you in your generosity and in your needs; one makes you be Jesus, and the other reminds you that you need Him.

In Him as always,
Happy Thanksgiving!
sign frjim

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