This Sunday we celebrate the Feast of Our Lord Jesus Christ, the King of the Universe as we approach the end of the liturgical year of our Church. We remember in a special way what Christ means to us, what Christ did for us, and that we are called to serve the King of Kings.
This coming Thursday, we also celebrate Thanksgiving Day, and we are encouraged to give thanks for the many blessings that the Lord has bestowed on us. As in the past, we pray that Thanksgiving Day will not be commercialized, but rather will truly be a time for reflection and thanksgiving. It is so easy to get caught up in shopping frenzies, travel plans, and other situations that can distract us from the truly important significance of this day.
The word “Eucharist” means “giving thanks” and we are invited to attend Mass on Thanksgiving Day. If possible, we are also encouraged to share a meal with loved ones. As we attend Mass and as we enjoy a meal together, we can reflect on our blessings and thank God for the gifts of our life, our health, our family, our friends, and our vocations. We can also give thanks for the gift of our precious faith, and for the opportunity to serve our brothers and sisters, especially our brothers and sisters in need at this time of the year.
The following “Thanksgiving Day Prayer” provided by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops reflects the significance of the day:
Lord, we thank You for the goodness of our people and for the spirit of justice that fills our nation.
We thank You for the beauty and fullness of the land and the challenge of the cities.
We thank You for our work and our rest, for one another, and for our homes.
We thank You, Lord: accept our thanksgiving on this day.
We pray and give thanks through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.
As we reflect on this prayer, our bishops suggest that beginning Monday, the days before Thanksgiving be set aside for deeds of charity, for penance, and for prayers for economic justice. Our bishops are painfully aware that many people are marginalized in some way and continue to suffer in these difficult and uncertain times. e can also pray that Thanksgiving Day will truly be a time to thank God for prayers answered and blessings received.
On behalf of the priests, deacons, and staff at Saint Brigid, I give thanks for our Saint Brigid faith community and I pray that your Thanksgiving Day will be a blessed one.