Here in the United States, some gather together on Thanksgiving Day to celebrate thanks to God for all the gifts He so generously bestows upon us.
This American tradition all began when a group of Separatists felt the need to leave England to seek out opportunities for civil and religious freedom. They went from England to the Dutch Netherlands then to America.
On September 6th a ship called the Mayflower carrying 102 Pilgrims traveled over harsh waters for over two months before seeing land on the shores of Massachusetts early in November. Before docking, they searched for a suitable place to begin their new life, so in early December, before disembarking the Mayflower, they signed what is known as the Mayflower Compact. This was the first document to lay the groundwork for civil government and for these people to be self-governed.
The Pilgrims began building their community, but many of them became sick and only “52 people survived the first year.”
After several months in Plymouth, Massachusetts, the Pilgrims and the Native Americans from the Wampanoag Tribe befriended one another. A treaty was signed between the Pilgrims and the Native Americans to ensure peace remained between them.
Squanto, who had been taken as a prisoner by Englishmen, had lived in England and ended up joining the Pilgrims in Plymouth, Massachusetts, and taught them how to hunt beaver and grow Indian corn.
In the autumn of 1621, during harvest time, the Pilgrims, who were now American colonists, prepared a feast that lasted three days where they were joined by the Native Americans. We have come to know that day as Thanksgiving Day.
Read more about the Pilgrims departure from England at https://www.plimoth.org/learn/just-kids/homework-help/who-were-pilgrims
These Pilgrims were certainly a brave group of individuals, but I trust that their desire to practice their faith without repercussions inspired them and led them to America.
The freedom to practice one’s faith so long as it does not harm another was worth traveling over threatening seas and uncertain conclusions, and many suffered as they paved the way for us to be able to celebrate this holiday, so let us observe it with overflowing hearts of gratitude for the Pilgrims and Native Americans who participated in making America great.
Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours from us at Foundation of Love!