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Thanksgiving Day

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Matthew 6: 31-34

  • Matthew 6: 31-34 (RC)(A & B)
  • Matthew 6: 25-33 (RCL)

Luke 17: 11-19

  • Luke 17: 11-19 (RC)(B&C)
  • Luke 17: 11-19 (RCL)(A)

John 6: 25-35

  • John 6: 25-35 (RCL)(A)

2 Corinthians 9: 6-15

  • 2 Corinthians 9: 6-15 (RC & RCL)(A)

James 1: 17-18, 21-27

  • James 1: 17-18, 21-27 (EL)(A)

Philippians 4: 4-7, 11b-13

  • Philippians 4: 4-7, 11b-13 (EL)
  • Philippians 4: 4-9 (RCL)

1 Timothy 2: 1-7

  • 1 Timothy 2: 1-7 (RCL)(B)

Psalm 65: 1-13

  • Psalm 65: 1-13 (RCL & EL)(A)

Psalm 67: 2-3, 5, 7-8

  • Psalm 67: 2-3, 5, 7-8 (RC)(A)

Psalm 95: 1-11

  • Psalm 95: 1-11 (RCL & EL)
  • Psalm 95 (RCL & EL)

Psalm 100: 1-5

  • Psalm 100: 1-5 (RCL)(C)

Psalm 116: 1-2, 12-19

  • Psalm 116: 1-2, 12-19 (RCL)

Psalm 126: 1-6

  • Psalm 126: 1-6 (RCL)(B)

Joel 2: 21-24, 26-27

  • Joel 2: 21-24, 26-27 (RC)(A)
  • Joel 2: 21-27 (RCL)(B)

Deuteronomy 8: 7-11

  • Deuteronomy 8: 7-11 (RCL)(A)
  • Deuteronomy 8: 1-3, 6-10 (17-20) (EL)

Deuteronomy 26: 1-18

  • Deuteronomy 26: 1-18 (RCL)(C)
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Commentaries and Lectionary Reflections (2021)

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Commentaries and Lectionary Reflections (2017 to 2020)

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Illustrated Resources from the Archives

  • Thanksgiving (B)(2012)

    by Delmer Chilton
    ("Some years ago I found myself at a revival meeting in a small rural church. One of the young women from my Lutheran youth group had been asked to sing a solo so I went to support her. The preacher was a traveling evangelist and he put on quite an exhibition; shouting and hollering and stomping his feet and breaking into song and denouncing sins, some of which I had never heard of....")
  • The Blessing of Michael’s Story: A Thanksgiving

    by Dawn Hutchings
    On that day and on every other day that I rode the bus with Michael, I was reminded, whether I liked it or not, of the beauty and the wonder of life. Somehow Michael managed to pierce our dullness. Somehow Michael was able to make us forget that his behaviour was inappropriate; that he was intruding on us, that the timing was all wrong, that he was breaking all our rules. Michael burst into our lives and interrupted our routines, and in the middle of a dull, damp and dreary February funk, he reminded us of how truly blessed we really are. Michael’s daily reminders challenged us all to remember our many blessings....
  • Who IS God? Not One, Not Two...

    by Dawn Hutchings
    Joan Chittister tells a story of a seeker: “How does one seek union with God?” the seeker asked. “The harder you seek, the more distance you create between God and you,” the elder answered. “So what does one do about the distance?” the seeker persisted. “Understand that it isn’t there.” The elder answered. “Does that mean that God and I are one?” the seeker continued. “Not one, not two,” the elder answered. “But how is that possible?” the seeker cried, dismayed...
  • The Alpha and the Omega

    by David Leininger
    ("We remember the Pilgrims' journey that had begun so full of hope for a new life of religious freedom in a warm and welcoming land called Virginia. Oops. Instead they landed at Plymouth Rock on December 21, 1620, not the best time of year in Massachusetts...")
  • Thanksgiving and Worship

    by Jim McCrea
    •Laurie DeMott tells of a student who asked her, “[…] what good is God?” She quickly replied, “What good are your parents?” That question threw the student a little off balance, so the student said, “What do you mean?” DeMott then replied, “Your parents have hopes for you and dreams for you and they work to help you develop into a person who is capable of fulfilling those dreams — dreams of goodness, happiness and peace. That doesn’t mean that they have pre-determined your path or know exactly every decision you will make. “That doesn’t mean that they can keep you from all harm and ensure that your life will be carefree and successful. It does mean, however, that they love you deeply and continually no matter what, and that that constant unfailing love can shape you. It will help you to mature, strengthen your values, and encourage the best in you so that you will become capable of creating a world of peace and beauty around you. That’s what God does. God shows us the vision of what we can be; what our world can be; and then loves us into being.”...
  • My Worst Thanksgiving

    by Larry Patten
    One of the 2018 films just released is The Green Book. Inspired by a true story, it depicts a relationship between a black man, a gifted pianist, and the white man hired to drive the musician through the American south for a 1962 concert tour. The film’s title is from the very real Green Book that was once used to find safe spots to eat and sleep. Blacks in America, at that time of America, were often refused service. This all took place during my own lifetime. I suspect that every African-American family, right now in 2018, has a parent or grandparent that vividly recalls needing the Green Book. In other words, a cruel slice of history is also a current family memory for many Americans...
  • Picture Perfect: On Giving Thanks for a Moment

    by Larry Patten
    On the day after 2013’s Thanksgiving, I took the picture included with these thoughts. It’s my mother. My wife. Our dog. Hannah, our beloved first golden retriever, would die a year later, at the advanced age (for her breed) of fourteen years. Mom, happily focused on a puzzle, had about nine months to live. She died the following August. In this picture, Mom is grieving. Except that she’s not. Her husband of six-plus decades had died the year before. Dad’s insidious spiral into dementia spanned years. Like many spouses caring for a loved one with a progressive neurological illness, Mom’s deepest grief occurred while Dad continued to live. His death was a delayed, prayed-for blessing. Still, in the photo, she’s a widow...
  • Thanksgiving (B)

    from Sacra Conversazione
    In Texts Under Negotiation: The Bible and Postmodern Imagination, Walter Brueggemann cites the text that is today’s appointed gospel as among those passages that invite one to adopt a very particular point of view. He writes that the biblical message: “asserts, affirms, and celebrates that the human self, each precious one, me and all my neighbors, is a product of God’s majesty, power and generosity.” When a person adopts this point of view, she also realizes that “I exist is a reality that is referred outside myself to the mystery of God to which I can only respond in gratitude and doxology. Because I exist, I must sing a song that voices my life in unfettered gratitude.”...
  • Thanksgiving (C)

    from Sacra Conversazione
    At the 1997 Villanova conference, “God, the Gift and Postmodernism,” organized by John Caputo, Fr. Richard Kearney interviewed Jacques Derrida and Jean-Luc Marion on the centrality of “the gift” to their work. At one point in that conversation, published later under the same title as the conference, Derrida decided to summarize Marion’s approach this way: I have come “to interpret everything as a gift, everything… that we meet in perception, given to my intuition.” Derrida continued as if speaking for Marion: “I perceive this; it is not given. I did not produce this. I did not create this… the finite subject does not create its object, it receives it, receptively. Receptivity is interpreted as precisely the situation if the created being, the creature, which receives everything in the world as something created. So it is a gift. Everything is a gift.”
  • In All Things Be Thankful

    Sermon Starter by Leonard Sweet
    Back during the dark days of 1929, a group of ministers in the Northeast, all graduates of the Boston School of Theology, gathered to discuss how they should conduct their Thanksgiving Sunday services. Things were about as bad as they could get, with no sign of relief. The bread lines were depressingly long, the stock market had plummeted, and the term Great Depression seemed an apt description for the mood of the country. The ministers thought they should only lightly touch upon the subject Thanksgiving in deference to the human misery all about them. After all, there was little to be thankful for. But it was Dr. William L. Stiger, pastor of a large congregation in the city that rallied the group. This was not the time, he suggested, to give mere passing mention to Thanksgiving, just the opposite. This was the time for the nation to get matters in perspective and thank God for blessings always present, but perhaps suppressed due to intense hardship.

Commentaries and Lectionary Reflections (Archives)

(Resources listed here reference more than one reading and are normally shorter than the resources listed under the individual texts above. If you are looking to link the readings, check these resources.)

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Prayers of the People

Worship Resources (2017 to 2019)

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Worship Resources (Archives)

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