"Would you know who is the greatest saint in the world: It is not he who prays most or fasts most, it is not he who gives most alms or is most eminent for temperance, chastity or justice; but it is he who is always thankful to God, who wills everything that God wills, who receives everything as an instance of God's goodness and has a heart always ready to praise God for it." --William Law
Today is the fourth Thursday of November 2011, and we again celebrate Thanksgiving. Celebrating on the fourth Thursday was set in stone by President Franklin Roosevelt in 1941 in order for merchants to get a jump start on the Christmas season.
Some historians would point to 1565 as the first Thanksgiving celebration in this country, celebrated by the Spaniards in St Augustine, Fla. Some purists would say that the first Thanksgiving occurred in 1619 in Virginia, but most of us celebrate the tradition beginning at Plymouth Plantation Mass. in 1621.
Thanksgiving is a holiday for all ages; it is the day that most kids start dreaming of bright shinny toys and sugar plums. It is a day where many of us take that trek over hill and dale to visit and spend time with family. It is the day that we enjoy something special around the dinner table - a feast that is cooked all day and includes everyone's traditions. By the time the meal has been served our minds have tricked us into feeling full.
All of these are the special things we have done and still do to celebrate this bountiful family holiday.
We might have forgotten that Thanksgiving was a day set aside by our earliest ancestors to celebrate survival and the bounties of the land that helped them survive. It was a day set aside to thank strangers and neighbors alike for their help in that survival. It was a day set aside to thank God Almighty for his many blessings.
Today and every day we need to be mindful of the true spirit of Thanksgiving; it, for sure, is not the best of times for some of our neighbors, so we suggest inviting someone to enjoy your bountiful meal and to share with your neighbors the joy you might feel as your family gathers.
Here in Rockdale County we have much to be thankful for, we have beautiful county, moderate temperatures neighbors that are willing help neighbors. We are thankful to you our reader and advertiser, because of your support the Rockdale News is thriving in its third year. From all of us here at the Rockdale News and our families, have a thankful day and above all thank the good Lord for his bountiful harvest and blessings.