On this “secular” holiday, infused as it is with such profoundly religious meaning, we should really take some time to reflect on the fact that the Greek word from which we derive the word “Eucharist” is rendered “Thanksgiving” in English. The Catechism reminds us that, “The inexhaustible richness of this sacrament is expressed in the different names we give it. Each name evokes certain aspects of it. It is called: Eucharist, because it is an action of thanksgiving to God. The Greek words eucharistein and eulogein recall the Jewish blessings that proclaim God’s works: creation, redemption, and sanctification.” – CCC #1328
How appropriate. In that Sacrament of Sacraments, we receive Jesus Christ in His fullness, the greatest gift of the Father. And, we are called to give thanks. In the words of the Apostle Paul to the early Christians we are reminded to “Rejoice always. Pray without ceasing. In all circumstances give thanks, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.” – 1 Thessalonians. 5:16-18 One of the ways Christians do this is to become people who choose to live our lives for others. When we give thanks we learn to love.
Today, the Church calls her faithful sons and daughters to give thanks in her Liturgy. St. Teresa was fond of saying “We will not learn how to love if we are not grateful.” The Readings for the Mass for Thanksgiving call us to gratitude. Jesus, in His Sacred humanity, shows us how to live a life of gratitude and, through the gift of Himself, makes it all possible.
As we give thanks, we discover how to be faithful to our call to continue the redemptive mission of Jesus Christ, Love Incarnate, in an age hungering for the fullness of God’s love. We are called to give thanks and we are called to love with the very Love of God in which all human love is revealed and through which all human love is perfected.
Please consider joining us in our school-wide service projects and continuing SUCCESS program this coming Advent, in support of those in need (see flier below). May the love of the Holy Family shine through you as we celebrate this Thanksgiving.
Pax et Bonum,