What is “thanksgiving”? Considering that all in America who believe in God the Creator of the world Who provides for all recognize this day with songs of praise to God, “Thanksgiving Day” has a religious character.
And for us, Orthodox Christians, thanksgiving is a testimony to God’s presence in the life of the world and man.
Thanksgiving is a profound religious response from our heart, with reverent gladness and awe, testimony to the fact that the Lord participates in our personal life by His grandeur, His glory and love.
Thanksgiving is a response to God’s gifts; it is a joyous appreciation of divine mercy and bounty manifested to us in our lives.
And finally, thanksgiving, the feeling of gratitude, is the foundation of our ever-renewing life in Christ Jesus, our Lord. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks (1 Thess. 5:17–18), the apostle Paul teaches us.
The feeling of gratitude to God is the first and main feeling in which a child must be brought up from earliest childhood in order to become an emotionally normal person, inclined toward and capable of spiritual development.
With these feelings and with this wish do we address you today, with a song of glory to the Most High. Amen.