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   Vol. 17 No. 79
Wednesday November 21, 2018

Thanksgiving In America 2018
Thanksgiving Day 2018

     Thanksgiving in America is held every fourth Thursday in November, and is the best of all the holidays that gather families and friends around a common celebration.
     Personalities aside, this is one holiday that is a no-pressure deal.
     Nobody gets gifts or is expected to do more than show up, eat, drink and refrain from getting too overserved so that you don’t get into a mix with old Uncle Al, or that other occasional family member that you just can’t stand.
     The occasion was created as a national day of thanks around a special meal, as (reportedly) the first Pilgrims had on November 11, 1621, one year after landing at a place called Plymouth, Massachusetts.
     Thanksgiving is now known in more modern terms for the big parade in Manhattan, New York, and other special television sporting events, especially American football, which is usually not broadcast on any other daytime Thursday otherwise.
     But the thing about Thanksgiving is that, no matter where you are from, Thanksgiving is an American thing to do.
     So in every corner of this great land, from California to the New York islands, on up into Alaska and down to Key West, Florida, Christians, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, and agnostics, whites, blacks, and every color in between, all put down their differences for a day and agree that traditions of love, family, and good food are the order of the day.
     In America, when you say “Happy Thanksgiving" nobody looks back and says, “That’s not my holiday.”
     Already, people are revving up for the next holiday—newspapers and shopping channels on TV are full of ads for Christmas.
     But beautiful Thanksgiving will have none of that.
     In fact most stores that sell turkeys, the traditional meal of the day in America, are either giving them away or offering the feast birds at or below cost.
     Not a good day for turkeys, to be sure.
     But if memory serves, when I lived on the farm, turkeys were the dumbest animals imaginable.
     Anytime it rained would scurry to get them inside, and some of them would look up and drown!
     So here’s to Thanksgiving: a day of peace, quiet, and reconciliation.
     Air Cargo has done its part delivering meals to the U.S. troops still stuck overseas, and we can all be thankful to air cargo for that.
     Some Americans pass the feeling along by working for a day serving meals in a Salvation Army kitchen or delivering food to the needy.
     But it is the small and mostly unreported concern toward each other, reflected in small gifts of food and open invitations of welcome to others, that should be recognized as an important expression of Thanksgiving.
     Individual acts of kindness have always been the spirit of Thanksgiving, as we gather friends and family at the table, hold hands, and sing:
               “We gather together to ask the Lord’s blessing:
               He chastens and hastens his will to make known.
               The wicked oppressing
               Cease them from distressing
               Sing praises to his name
               He forgets not his own.”

      Hooray for the pumpkin pie!

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