Thoughts from the Prioress on Thanksgiving

Thoughts from the Prioress on Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Day has been an annual tradition in the United States since it was declared a national observance in 1863. Historically, this civil holiday was a religious observance to give thanks to God — a day to express gratitude and appreciation to God, family and friends for bountiful harvest and meaningful relationships.

In the Liturgical Year Thanksgiving is recognized as a special day to give thanks. Designated as the fourth Thursday of November in the national calendar, it falls between the last Sunday of the previous Church Year and the first Sunday of the next Church Year. There is meaning to be found in this placement. Thanksgiving is a day to give thanks for the past and the future — a day to give thanks for all that has been and all that will be. But most importantly, Thanksgiving is about the present. It is a day to give thanks for what is.

In the name of the Benedictine Sisters of Erie, I extend gratitude to all of you who are part of our “present” in a very real way. You are what is for us — you are blessing in the love you extend, in the kindness you give, and in the support you offer. For all this and more, we are grateful.

“Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.” (Melody Beattie) In that spirit of gratitude we offer you in song our wish and our prayer — that God will bless you, keep you, give you peace and be more gracious to you than you can possibly imagine.

A blessed Thanksgiving be yours!

Sister Anne Wambach, OSB, the twenty-first prioress of the Benedictine Sisters of Erie, Pennsylvania is a native of Philadelphia. She moved to Mount St. Benedict Monastery in 1992 to respond to a desire to experience the monastic way of life. Previously a member of the Sisters of St. Joseph in Chestnut Hill, Sister Anne began the formal transfer process to the Erie Benedictines in 1993 and made her monastic profession in 1997.

Sister Anne has served the people of the Diocese of Erie as a teacher at St. Gregory's School in North East, Pa., from 1992-1995, and at the Neighborhood Art House in Erie, beginning as program director in 1995 and as executive director since 2005. She served on the Monastic Council from 2006-2010.