FROM THE ARCHIVES
By Mary Woodward
JACKSON – Once again, we come to the great feast of Thanksgiving throughout our country. Looking back over the years I would like to share some moments at table in the presence of cherished friends, some of whom have gone on to the Lord where they will partake in the feast of Thanksgiving for all eternity.
When we gather around the table with friends and family, we are sharing in communion with one another. I like to think all of our ancestors and dear ones, who made contributions to our lives great and small, are gathered there with us forming a communion of saints.
The Thanksgiving holiday offers a time for us to reflect on those ancestors and dear ones – to enjoy those present physically and those who are there transcending the moment in our memories. It is a time to be thankful for the moments we have shared and continue to share with those who love us and those whom we love.
Pictured are gatherings around tables around the diocese over the years. The word Eucharist means “thanksgiving,” so gathering around the altar for the celebration of the Eucharist is the most profound gathering of all gatherings. (Photos courtesy of archives)
And of course, the ultimate table for us to gather around is the altar where we share in the heavenly banquet with the entire communion of saints. The word Eucharist means thanksgiving, so gathering around the altar for the celebration of the Eucharist is the most profound gathering of all gatherings.
This Thanksgiving I hope we all are able to ponder the many blessings we have in our lives even if they are small. Take the time to let your friends and family know exactly how much they mean to you and what a blessing they are in your life.
Spend time in prayer for those who do not have family and friends available to them or are in strained family situations. Do not miss an opportunity to heal a rift and mend a heart by showing kindness, patience and love. You do not want to have regrets when that person is gone.
Most of all, give thanks to God for bestowing the grace, mercy and peace upon you that can only come from encountering and surrendering to God’s infinite heart. Take care of one another.
(Mary Woodward is Chancellor and Archivist for the Diocese of Jackson.)