Thanksgiving Day 2013
A beautiful day like the Thanksgiving Day invites us to reflect seriously on our life and on its essential relatedness. The meaning of human existence emerges from its radical relatedness. I am what I am on account of my relations. After our primary and most fundamental relatedness to God, it is to our family that we remain most intimately related. That is why Thanksgiving Day turns out to be such a beautiful occasion of family reunion. We come together joyfully and cherish and celebrate our family intimacy. We tell aloud how much our family means to us, however limited and deficient it may be. We recall, how deep an impact the love and care that I receive from my family have on my life and personality. We realize how sadly we would have missed our family. So on this day we joyfully celebrate our essential relatedness and indebtedness to our family.
But this sense of my deep intimacy and indebtedness to my family is to be felt and lived all the days of my life, not only on the Thanksgiving Day. On the Thanksgiving Day we do it with signs and symbols. But every day of the year we live and cherish this relatedness. I would not be what I am today without the love and sacrifice of my parents, the care and concern of my siblings, the unconditional love and support of my wife/husband, and the hope and joy that my children bring to my life. In return to all these, I set aside my life to enrich my family. And this is real thanksgiving. One important thought that should fill my mind on a day like this is this: ‘the family is not for me, but I am for the family’; that is, my wife/husband, my parents, my siblings, my children are not to be considered as mere means to fulfill my life, but I am there to fulfill their life. The primary aim of my life as a family member is to enrich their life through my life because I owe so much to each of them. Let us thank the Lord for the precious gift of our family and let us thank each member of our family. May the Thanksgiving Day help us to heighten our profound family feelings. I wish all of you a blessed Thanksgiving Day and a meaningful family reunion.