Celebrate Thanksgiving! Find Catholic Thanksgiving prayers, read stories on giving thanks, and send e-cards!
Looking for saints who shared her love of cooking, Amy Heyd, author of Saints at the Dinner Table (Franciscan Media), discovered several, such as Saints Margaret and Christine, whom she would like to invite to her house. She writes:
“I realize now more than ever that when I pray to a saint, I need to have some connection with that saint. Because I am a mother of three children and enjoy cooking for my family as well as friends, I thought I would research saints who shared my interest in food and care-taking.”
Heyd spoke with Franciscan Media about food, faith, and family gatherings.
We thank you, Father, for the gift of Jesus your Son who came to our earth and lived in a simple home. We have a greater appreciation of the value and dignity of the human family because he loved and was loved within its shelter.
Bless us this day; may we grow in love for each other in our family and so give thanks to you who are the maker of all human families and our abiding peace. Amen.
Thanksgiving, always a joyful but demanding week, is the perfect time to invite into your lives two November saints: Philemon (fuh-LEE-mun) and Apphia (AF-ee-uh). November 22 is the feast day of this New Testament husband and wife, and it happens to also be the earliest possible date for Thanksgiving; however, November 22 more frequently lands on a Thanksgiving preparation day.
Sometimes it’s easier to think of all the bad things—bombings, murders, illness, misfortune—in the world than the good things. But we must realize that there are good things, even in difficult times, for which we can give thanks.
For example, Anne Frank, the young girl whose diary put a face on the Holocaust, demonstrated her ability to give thanks for the simplest of things: “I do not think of all the misery, but of the glory that remains. Go outside into the fields, nature and the sun, go out and seek happiness in yourself and in God. Think of the beauty that again and again discharges itself within and without you and be happy.”
In the November 2003 issue of St. Anthony Messenger, Susan Hines-Brigger interviewed Father Dominic Garramone, OSB, then the host of the PBS television show Breaking Bread With Father Dominic.
“On a purely human level, there is great satisfaction in producing a beautiful loaf of bread or a unique pizza, the same kind of enjoyment that quilters and woodworkers get in practicing their craft,” Father Dominic says about the joys of preparing food.
The tradition of Thanksgiving is an important one, whether you have an elaborate feast or a simple supper. It’s a day to give thanks for our abundant blessings, both material and spiritual.
So don’t stress out if everything isn’t up to Martha Stewart’s standards. She’s not going to be at your table, anyway. I’ve hosted many Thanksgiving feasts for family and friends and will give you this advice: parsley and whipped cream are great culinary go-to’s!
Thanksgiving is a time for Americans to celebrate both food and family in our land of plenty. But what happens when plenty becomes too much, when surplus turns into waste? Our faith calls for us to live modestly, but this can be a daunting endeavor.
Consider the barrage of materialistic temptations showered upon us daily through the media. In this environment, which Pope Francis and others have referred to as the “throwaway culture,” human beings fade into a different entity: consumers.
Food and faith are integral to Thanksgiving, as Father Greg Friedman, OFM, and Father Leo Patalinghug explain in these videos!