This blog is about the story of my family here in America. We arrived in the 1630s as Puritans, and became the common folk of the New World.

What the Puritans would think of Thanksgiving


My family, the Puritans, would have been delighted to see people take time out to give thanks to God. In spite of the term "Puritanical" - which really was a description of Victorians, and that Puritans were not the same as Pilgrims (a trivial point), they embraced giving thanks.

But my family wouldn't have been able to imagine setting aside a day for this. They thanked God every day, every moment, with every breath they took. I don't picture them thumping Bibles, or saying "Praise Jesus!" with every other sentence, but they wove thanks into the fabric of their lives.

It's no exaggeration to say that their religion had been "hijacked" by people in power, and that they were escaping corruption. My family didn't leave the comfort of England just to see the wilderness of the New World, they were running for their lives. Many people in Europe died when they chose to protest the existing church. That's where Protestant comes from, by the way, protest-ant.

If you want to celebrate Thanksgiving the way that my Puritan family would have celebrated it, you would need to fast. But I don't recommend that. Instead, make giving thanks a very personal thing. Feel it in your heart, show it in the way you live. That's what my family would have done.
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