Happy Thanksgiving to each and every one of you!
It is Thanksgiving morning and my pies are all made and cookies are decorated (I was the dessert lady this year). We just got back from Mass and are watching some of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, a tradition from Ben’s family’s Thanksgiving mornings that we are carrying on with our kids. They are loving dancing to all the music and seeing the incredible performers. Rosie is especially excited for Santa’s announcement that comes at the end.
Before heading to church I realized I never even drafted a blog post for today and I wondered if I would have a chance to write something. I also had to pause to try and put into words all of the many things I am thankful for this year.
We have so much to be thankful for. 3 beautiful children, a 4th growing well as we anxiously await their birth. We not only have a home that fits our family during our transition, we are in the process of buying a home in Del Rio, where we will be moving early next year. We are surrounded by family without needing to travel, something that Ben and I have not had in our 6 years of marriage. We are healthy, our children are thriving, Ben has a job that provides for our needs. There is much to be thankful for.
I am especially thankful for our Catholic faith and the continuity it gives us as we move from place to place. The familiarity of the liturgical rhythms offer our kids a sense of security and hominess beyond anything we could provide. Today at Mass I was able to see this in full force with John and it really hit me just how grateful I am for this faith community.
John had a good first half of Mass, but started to get upset when he had to share some of the things he brought into church. His new thing is to be “grouchy” and put on a sour face. This was, of course, during the consecration. As we waited for communion to start, John was at the end of the pew. I told him he had the opportunity to “make a change” (our key phrase for the kids to let them know they need to turn their attitude around or consequences will ensue). Since he was on the end, he could have the job of leading our family to communion, leading our family to Jesus. He stood up a little straighter and said “I can do that Mommy.”
We waited for the pew in front of us to empty and then John led us. He made sure Clare stayed behind him and didn’t run into anyone. He did a good job. When we got back I told him that he did well. He was beaming and said to me,
Mommy, I made a change during communion! I’m not grouchy anymore!
Be still my heart! Isn’t this exactly what the gift of communion, of Jesus’ very Body and Blood, is supposed to do to each of us? What an incredible gift Jesus has given us. Eucharist is food for our journey of life. But it is also a powerful, the most powerful, agent of change in our lives. When we receive Christ, we are more intimately brought into communion, union, with Christ and with each other. We change.
There are a great many things to be thankful for. Eucharist even means thanksgiving! I am so thankful that I didn’t have anything written for today so that I could share this beautiful experience of joy, transformation and gratitude with you.
Happy Thanksgiving from all of us!