Thursday, November 22, 2007

America’s Holiday

At least as American as the 4th of July and more deeply rooted in America’s Judeo-Christian roots, Thanksgiving stands alone as a uniquely American Holiday. A day in which we pause to give THANKS for the BLESSING of Liberty, which is the foundation of our Constitutional Republic.

Though the first Thanksgiving was celebrated way back in 1620, before America was even a nation, that tradition has been a part of the fabric of American life ever since.

When George Washington presided over the Republic, the following prayer was offered in 1789, in gratitude over the hard-earned independence the 13 original Colonies had won from England;

“Almighty God, we make our earnest prayer that Thou wilt keep the United States in thy holy protection; that Thou wilt incline the hearts of the citi zens to cultivate a spirit of subordination and obedience to government, and entertain a brotherly affection and love for one another and for their fellow citizens of the United States at large.

“And, finally that Thou wilt graciously be pleased to dispose us all to do justice, to love mercy and to demean ourselves with that charity, humility and pacific temper of mind which were the characteristics of the Divine Author of our blessed religion, and without a humble imitation of whose example in these things we can never hope to be a happy nation. Amen.”

But it was Abraham Lincoln, a extremely taciturn man, who, on Oct. 3, 1863, first established Thanksgiving as a holiday for a nation wracked by civil war, proclaiming;

“I invite my fellow citizens to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next as a day of thanksgiving and praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the heavens.”

And it has remained an American Holiday ever since. Even more than Christmas, a day for families to give thanks for their blessings and celebrate family and freedom (Liberty).

Happy Thanksgiving!


Seane-Anna said...

Hi JMK! Hope you had a wonderful and blessed Thanksgiving!

JMK said...

I did, Poorggl. I have a lot to be thankful about, mostly health and family, which are the two most vital and often overlooked forms of "wealth."

I hope you did as well, and I hope you and yours have a great and memorable Christmas season.

WomanHonorThyself said...

Happy Thanksgiving ..pass the

Anonymous said...

hoped you enjoyed the lasagna

JMK said...

Yeah Angel, that's the thing about Thanksgiving, people always make way too much food!

It's an amazing Holiday.

JMK said...

I did Rachel. The day was great, I just had to pay for it by working Friday day and night, getting home Saturday morning around 9:30 am and heading back in Saturday afternoon around 3:30 pm to get home Sunday night around 7:30 pm - from around 6 am on Friday, I was only home 6 of the next 61 hours. I'm glad to be home now, for a couple of days!

As for the Thanksgiving food staples, turkey's a lot like coffee for me, in that I love the scents, but I don't much like the tastes.

When I was a kid, Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter were all pretty wonderous events, but very stressful times, as well.

My Mom was up 4 am cleaning the house and preparing for the day, my Dad worked in the Ocean Hill Brownsville/East New York section of Brooklyn, in the Fire Dept - they were very busy back then and he always came home reeking of smoke. It gets in your pores, in your hair, everywhere. So Dad was usually tired and grouchy and Mom was exhausted and over-worked, so it became increasingly easy for the two oldest and most rambunctious of us (Jim & me) to get into trouble around that time of year.

The entire Thanksgiving-Christmas season was sort of a double edged sword for us, in that way.

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