When my daughter, Madison, was beginning to talk, my husband,
Mark, and I found ourselves frustrated that we couldn't get
her to say "thank you." She easily caught on to using "please,"
"excuse me" and other expressions, so we were stumped as to
why she didn't pick up "thank you."
One day when I was telling my friend about Mark's and my
frustration, she looked at me very matter-of-factly and said,
"Maybe you and Mark aren't saying 'thank you' enough. She's
picking up what she hears the two of you saying."
I was stopped cold. She was right.
Giving Thanks for God's Bounty
This month, most of us will gather for Thanksgiving with
family and friends to give thanks to God for all the blessings
we have received throughout the year.
Our current Thanksgiving Day customs have their roots in
the Thanksgiving celebration of 1621 in Plymouth, Massachusetts,
when the pilgrims celebrated a three-day feast with the Native
Americans. The purpose of the celebration was to give thanks
for God's bounty upon the pilgrims with their first harvest.
And so today we still gather around the table every yearprobably
not for three daysto give thanks for God's goodness
throughout the year. But the unfortunate reality is that once
the turkey is eaten and everyone has gone home, oftentimes
our sense of gratitude is stored away with the decorations
until next year.
But it shouldn't be that way. Giving thanks is something
we should do every day.
Giving thanks is an integral part of our Catholic faith.
The Scriptures are filled with passages urging us to give
thanks for the gifts God has bestowed upon us"Give thanks
to the Lord, for he is good, for his mercy endures forever"
Giving Thanks Year-round
The celebration of Thanksgiving is a perfect reminder and
opportunity for all of us to stop and think about how often
we say thanks for things throughout the year. Better yet,
how often do we say thanks every day? Sometimes it's not enoughas
Mark and I found out.
So did we ever get Madison to start saying "thank you"? Less
than a month after talking to my friend, Mark and I began
making more of an effort to say "thank you" ourselves. Maddie
Next Month: Let There Be Peace On Earth