“Are you hungry?”
Thanksgiving Day, November 28, 2013
RCL Year C: Dt. 26:1-11, Phil. 4:4-9, Jn 6:25-35
Christ and St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, Norfolk, VA
The Rev. Gillian R. Barr
Are you hungry? Are you hungry?
Today is a national holiday focused on thanksgiving and built around a feast–and to enjoy a feast, you need to be hungry! I’ve been getting hungry all week as I’ve read my Facebook feed and seen all the menus and recipes people have posted of what they’re planning to eat this afternoon.
Sharing Thanksgiving menus and recipes on Facebook and via email has been an internet tradition for years. But this year I’ve been seeing other things. Some new holiday observances have cropped up this year. Now, we know that today is Thanksgiving, and tomorrow is Black Friday, with door buster deals starting at midnight or dawn, and Monday is Cyber-Monday, when we sit at our desks at work and shop for deals online. But this year I have also seen mention of the “30 Days of Gratitude,” where each day in November people post something they’re grateful for, with a special hash-tag. And tomorrow is not only Black Friday, now it’s also “Bless Friday.” instead of shopping we are encouraged to spend our time being involved in one hands-on act of service–whether at a food pantry or soup kitchen or any other service project–anything so long as it is a hands-on way of being a blessing to others. And this coming Tuesday is now Giving Tuesday. Giving Tuesday is a network of charitable organizations who have each registered a specific initiative for which they’re raising funds on Giving Tuesday. We can give to charity online on Tuesday using the same credit card we shopped with on Cyber Monday and Black Friday.
As for Black Friday, it has been pointed out that “Only in America will people trample others for sales exactly one day after being thankful for what they already have.”
We have begun to realize that perhaps our celebration of this holiday and Christmas have gotten out of perspective. Continue reading