Thursday, November 24, 2005

Thank - God?

First off, let me wish a Happy and Healthy Thanksgiving to all, regardless of politics, personalities or anything else that may serve to create rifts between any of us throughout the year. One of the best things about the holiday season is that it's a nice opportunity for everybody to put things in perspective and remember those things that are truly important. All too often, especially in political circles, it is easy to get immersed in the moment and forget to take a step back and take stock of how fortunate we are on so many levels.

(As for the picture, it was just too good not to use)

On a related note, I came across the following yesterday and wanted to share it. With all the debate about trying to find the proper relationship between government and religion, I think that it is interesting to read the Thanksgiving Day proclamation of our first president. So without further comment, I will let you make what you will of the following:
Washington's 1789 Thanksgiving Day Proclamation:

WHEREAS it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favour; and Whereas both Houses of Congress have, by their joint committee, requested me "to recommend to the people of the United States a DAY OF PUBLICK THANSGIVING and PRAYER, to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness:"

NOW THEREFORE, I do recommend and assign THURSDAY, the TWENTY-SIXTH DAY of NOVEMBER next, to be devoted by the people of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being who is the beneficent author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be; that we may then all unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble thanks for His kind care and protection of the people of this country previous to their becoming a nation; for the signal and manifold mercies and the favorable interpositions of His providence in the course and conclusion of the late war; for the great degree of tranquility, union, and plenty which we have since enjoyed;-- for the peaceable and rational manner in which we have been enable to establish Constitutions of government for our sasety and happiness, and particularly the national one now lately instituted;-- for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed, and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge;-- and, in general, for all the great and various favours which He has been pleased to confer upon us.

And also, that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech Him to pardon our national and other transgressions;-- to enable us all, whether in publick or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually; to render our National Government a blessing to all the people by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed; to protect and guide all sovereigns and nations (especially such as have shewn kindness unto us); and to bless them with good governments, peace, and concord; to promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the increase of science among them and us; and, generally to grant unto all mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as he alone knows to be best.

GIVEN under my hand, at the city of New-York, the third day of October, in the year of our Lord, one thousand seven hundred and eighty-nine.

(signed) G. Washington


At November 24, 2005 at 1:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Washington text is interesting, but that photo is GREAT! Happy Thanksgiving Rep.

At November 27, 2005 at 9:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is the first time that i, and I'm sure many of your other readers have ever seen the 'original' proclamation. I find it very interesting that, given the fact that this was proclaimed by our first President for our first Thanksgiving, that somebody didn't sue about the separation of church and state. Seems that maybe those of alternating views would want Thanksgiving canceled. And surely the animal rights people would back them up to save a bunch of turkeys. Aw, what the heck, let them go back to Washington after the break.


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