Archdiocese of Chicago

Catholic Chicago Blog

Monday, November 25, 2013

Preparing to Give Thanks

By Frank Hannigan

Psalm 118:28-29
You are my God, I give you thanks, my God, I offer you praise.
Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, his mercy endures forever.

I love Thanksgiving. The preparing begins weeks in advance. There are so many questions that need to be answered. Who will be eating with us this year? Is anyone else besides family going to be joining us? What time should dinner be? Can we make a dinner time one so that everyone can be there? Do we have enough chairs, tablecloths, napkins?

Has the turkey been ordered yet? How big a turkey should we get this year? How many are we feeding?

I love the day before Thanksgiving. Slicing apples for the apple pies. Baking a ridiculous amount of chocolate chip cookies. Don’t worry they’ll all be eaten! Picking up the turkey. Why are we making two kinds of stuffing? I love the smell as the cookies and pies bake.  

I love Thanksgiving morning. What time do we need to put the turkey in the oven? Doesn’t it seem that the turkey is always done early? What time is Mass? Should the turkey go in before or after Mass?

Mass is great. Sitting among so many people we know. Holding hands; yes we hold hands while we are sitting. An uplifting homily, great music. Sharing at the most important banquet table of the day. A refuge in a sea of activity. Getting home from Mass the house is already beginning to smell great as final preparations are being completed. Who’s sitting at the “kids” table? Family and loved ones start arriving. The table is set. All the food is ready. Marilyn has, once again, done a fantastic job! Brady, do you want to lead grace? Five year olds love to lead grace! All the questions have been answered. Let’s eat!

Thank you Lord for the many blessings in my life. Thank you especially for our family and friends, for those with whom I work and the many volunteers who make our ministry to engaged and married couples possible!

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your loved ones.

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