ON WE GO! – November 22, 2017
Submitted on November 22, 2017
I want to begin by wishing everyone a Happy Thanksgiving! This Thursday is a national holiday set aside for affirming harvest blessings and offering thanksgiving to God. I am glad to join our faculty, staff, and student colleagues at Georgetown in expressing thanks for bountiful blessings. I thank God every day for his many blessings, and Thanksgiving Day provides even more focus for that dimension of my life.
In this Perspective, I want to go even further to offer a suggestion that you should feel free to place in whatever category you think it deserves. My suggestion is that we discontinue Halloween, and replace it with Thanksgiving. You may find this to be a rather radical idea, but I think that I have been heading in this direction for sixty years. As a child, candy treats with trick-or-treating were fun, but the ghoulish, haunted, horror dimensions of Halloween have never appealed to me. In fact, I believe that the commercial and entertainment enterprises connected to Halloween’s macabre elements distract from its religious connections to All Hallows’ Eve.
On the other hand, it seems that Thanksgiving is treated almost as if it gets in the way of Christmas. Christmas decorations, advertisements, and sales run all through November, much to the expense of joyous Thanksgivings. In my opinion, Thanksgiving deserves far better treatment that it has been receiving in recent decades.
My suggestion is to do away with Halloween celebrations, and replace them with Thanksgiving celebrations. That would actually seem quite logical, based on sheer timing. The fourth Thursday of November seems somewhat late to celebrate a good harvest. Growing up on a farm, I participated in a lot of harvesting, almost all of which was finished by the end of September, and certainly by the end of October. My proposal would also provide Thanksgiving a more established place that would not be a detour leading up to Christmas. Just thinking!
On We Go!