Saturday, November 27, 2010

Pilgrims and Passover

This year's Thanksgiving reflection before grace:

"Y'all may remember from last year's Thanksgiving that the Pilgrims saw themselves as New Covenant Chosen People, whose experience paralleled that of the Israelites leaving Egypt and making a new life for themselves in the Promised Land. Not only was this true in general terms, but specifically so with respect to Thanksgiving.

Here's how Exodus describes observing the Passover:

“This day shall be a memorial feast for you, which all your generations shall celebrate with pilgrimage to the Lord, as a perpetual ordinance”

And the first instruction for the New World's Thanksgiving (1619):

"We ordaine that the day of our ships arrival at the place assigned for plantation in the land of Virginia shall be yearly and perpetually kept holy as a day of thanksgiving to Almighty God."  You can see how the writer alludes to Passover in his phrasing for the Thanksgiving memorial.

Let's also recall that  the first Thanksgiving held at the Plymouth Colony in 1621 was attended by a mere 53 survivors of the original 102 Pilgrims. In comparing our current misfortunes, both personal (ICU) and national, to those of 1621, we can be sure that we have much to be thankful for."

Grace follows.

This post is linked to Sunday Snippets.