Thanksgiving Day is a special time to feel a common bond with people across America who appreciate what God has done for our country and our communities. The Supreme Court, in the case of Lynch v. Donnelly, affirmed it as a government-initiated acknowledgement of God's goodness.
Here's one way to teach about the true meaning of Thanksgiving to your students:
- Give them a copy of the President's Thanksgiving Proclamation. To find it, visit whitehouse.gov and search for "Thanksgiving." Usually, the President issues a proclamation just a few days before the holiday. So, unless you're teaching about it right before Thanksgiving, you might need to use a previous year's proclamation.
- Show a picture of the President, explain what a Proclamation is, and that Presidents ask Americans to thank God for the blessings we have received as a nation in the previous twelve months.
- Finally, read the closing paragraph to the class and ask students to list the things the President asked Americans to do on Thanksgiving Day.
All I ask is that you teach the truth about this government-initiated holiday. It's not about the Pilgrims. It's about what God has done in the past year.