The truth about Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving ppt pic

No one can argue that American Thanksgiving is a complex weave of spiritual, historical and cultural elements resulting in a national identity with profound significance.

These insights are based on the book THE FIRST THANKSGIVING  by Robert Tracy McKenzie, Inter Varsity Press Academic, 2013.

Part #1

Ours is a “present tense society” … important to be inspired by true facts of past … “historical ignorance leaves us vulnerable” … “we have chosen the Pilgrims as our honorary ancestors” (American and Christian).

  • Pilgrim/Mayflower/Plymouth thanksgiving tradition was notFirst Thanksgiving” … More accurate label is “First American Protestant Thanksgiving North of Virginia and South of Maine”
  • Algonquin Indians participated in regular ceremonies linked to the crop cycle
  • Spanish held a Thanksgiving mass in St. Augustine Florida in 1565 (only two of the Pilgrims were even born)
  • Spanish held a Thanksgiving with Manso Indians near El Paso in 1598
  • French Huguenots celebrated Thanksgiving in 1564 near Jacksonville Florida
  • English colonialists on Maine coast in 1607 and in Virginia in 1610 & 1619

My observations: We as Christians must get history right. Accurate, reliable history is integral to the Christian faith. American Christians make a ‘big deal’ about the roots of this holiday, so it is essential to set the record straight and draw helpful insights with appropriate lessons. Those will come in subsequent posts.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.