Thanksgiving Day Celebration During Pandemic: Are there Changes?
Traditionally, most Americans before Thanksgiving Day are all agog for this momentous celebration in their family life. They are busy preparing for their menu list and shopping for holiday gifts for their loved ones. Today (November 26th or every last Thursday of November) is the most important holiday in the U.S. (even more important than Christmas Day) where Americans would take the holiday off and spend time with family and friends, catching up and enjoying their favorite Thanksgiving Turkey dish. For them, this is one special day for the entire family to sit down and have good conversation, enjoy the food and be grateful to God for all the good things bestowed upon them. And that makes this day truly an admirable family tradition.
How about their Thanksgiving Day celebration for 2020, with Covid-19 pandemic still haunting the world, particularly in the U.S? Would the celebration be similar to their previous Thanksgiving Days?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has warned Americans against Thanksgiving celebrations that include anyone other than those living in their immediate household. CDC likewise advised against any holiday travel and suggested that holiday gatherings be hosted outside, if possible. Government officials are of the view that Thanksgiving celebrations with large gathering and long meals indoors and with some travels involved could only contribute to spreading the virus, thus escalating cases of the disease. In fact, some of them encouraged Americans to skip such plans and stay home for the holidays. Note that Covid-19 virus cases in the U.S. have reached record highs in many areas of the country. As a matter of fact, the U.S. occupies the top most affected by Covid 19 virus in the world, with 12,770,716 cases, and 262,145 deaths as of November 25, 2020 based on Johns Hopkins University of Medicine, Corona Virus Resource Center.
However, Americans are Americans. Some of them would still like to celebrate their usual Thanksgiving by hook or by crook. Based on a survey conducted by various groups in the U.S., the responses vary depending on the states. On the average, about 30% of Americans plans to celebrate the day with people outside their homes (some say 14%, some 50%). However, about 40% of Americans are planning to host guests in their own homes. Health officials, as much as possible, would encourage virtual celebrations and cancel in-person plans because of the imminent danger these kind of gatherings will do not only putting them at risk but also the community. Should however, the celebration push through, they reminded them about social distancing and other health precautionary measures.
While there would be many changes in the Thanksgiving celebration, for sure, Americans recognize that the holiday is not just about food, the merriment, and the material things, it is more about gratitude. The spirit and essence of Thanksgiving Day which supposedly should be a day to thank God and share the blessings to the many, especially those who have none. How beautiful it would be to know and see that American families, all of them, especially the affluent ones share their time, talent and treasures to those in need, outside their family box. Perhaps, it is about time for them to think and reflect on how this pandemic affected their lives and on the things that would make them happier inside and out. Perhaps, as a form of gratitude, they can buy and share their food for the less fortunate (homeless, jobless, etc.) and donate needed things for them.
When we thank God for all the blessings received , it means we are grateful for what He has given us and presumably He would be glad to see us share our blessings to others too not only during Thanksgiving Day but throughout the year. God is Love and Love is God. We cannot love ourselves if we don’t love our neighbors, if we only think of ourselves. There are so many ways to be grateful and it does not end with a “thank you” note or a hug, it has to be more than that, it has to be accompanied with an appreciation and a good deed . We know it is easier said than done, especially if we treasure most what we have. Similarly, if peace and happiness reign in our hearts, we would easily be able to share said happiness to our family and friends. If there are personal grudges and enmities among the members of the family, it would be good if the same can be resolved at once. It may be hard to swallow the pride in us, thus may take a lot of sacrifice, but the gesture of going out of our way to sincerely greet the other person would also be a perfect way of thanking God and celebrating Thanksgiving Day!
For the special people in our lives, thank you all! Mwah!
For all the blessings received, for the beautiful world, for all creations, living and non-living things, THANK YOU SO MUCH GOD. We humbly pray dear Lord God for an end of this pandemic and that the spread of this Covid-19 virus be stopped so everything will be alright.
For our awesome readers, thank you so much for your time, for another wonderful holiday! Happy Thanksgiving to all! Enjoy your online shopping hopefully not only for yourself but for everyone especially those in need!
These photos were taken during our first Thanksgiving event during our many years in the U.S. It was raining, God must have been raining blessings on us! We had a glimpse of what a Macy Thanksgiving Parade is all about!!! Would there be a Macy Thanksgiving Parade in New York City today? Yes, there will still be! But because SAFETY is the No. 1 priority, unfortunately it can only be seen on TV and on the internet!