From Pastor Ben
Today, we gather with family and friends to celebrate the American holiday of Thanksgiving! Yes, there are many records of days or occasions of Thanksgiving in America even as far back as 1541. However, our modern observance of the present goes back the Pilgrims in 1621.
We have heard of the many accounts in our history of how the Pilgrims celebrated Thanksgiving. One such account was shared by Benson Loosing. He shared how the pilgrims at Plymouth spoke of the abundance of food in this time of the year in 1621, the very first year that they gathered after arriving in this great land. As a result of the many blessings, they were overjoyed with the results of their hard work and the bounty of the land that they had arrived on. This time of thanksgiving was the first celebration of as it was called, The great celebration of the New England festival of Thanksgiving.
Now in our current day, it is set as an annually held celebration in almost every State and Territory of the Union in the month of November.
The pilgrims gathered a good quantity of wild turkey and deer for a three day celebration of the Pilgrims. During this time they rejoiced, in eating, music, and even firing of guns. King Massasoit joined this celebration with his ninety followers, in which they contributed five deer for this banquet.
History also tells us that seven permanent homes had been built during that first summer; the people who were there were in good health; as well as a few additional emigrants had arrived from England in a second ship. Many homes were happy to be together in this wilderness adventure.
This is one of the collections stored in the Wall Builders' library of the 1778 a handwritten Thanksgiving proclamation written by New Hampshire Speaker of the House John Langdon (who later became a signer of the U. S. Constitution):
"This proclamation acknowledges our firm reliance on God: The mercies which, notwithstanding our great unworthiness, we are constantly receiving at the hands of Almighty God, ought ever to remind us of our obligations to Him; and it becomes our especial duty at the close of a year to unite together in rendering thanks to the Divine Disposer of all good for the bounties of His providence conferred on us in the course thereof."
As we celebrate today, we are reminded of the importance of this time that we come together in a simple expression for God's many blessings that we are are privileged to enjoy.
SO GO WITH GOD, for His desire to bless our efforts in this past year and His desire to protect us in the coming year. My dear friends, we have so much to give thanks for, but particularly for our great friendship and fellowship with each other. Take time to joy in the many blessings of this past year. Happy Thanksgiving!!!