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Sunday, October 11, 2009

The Meaning of Canadian Thanksgiving

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I realized the other day that I knew more about the history of American Thanksgiving then the Canadian version. So I looked it up on wiki.

Apparently, the reason for giving thanks changed throughout the years depending on what the event was at the time. It started with Martin Frobisher who celebrated safely returning home after exploring the Pacific Ocean. At the same time, Samuel de Champlain arrived with French settlers and they gave thanks for their own reasons. Later, people gave thanks after various wars ended. But mainly Thanksgiving is a time for people to give thanks at the end of the harvest season. Canadian Parliament defines it as . . . . "A Day of General Thanksgiving to Almighty God for the bountiful harvest with which Canada has been blessed … to be observed on the 2nd Monday in October".

So now I know. I used to celebrate Thanksgiving as just "Turkey Day" because I didn't like that people celebrated the pilgrims taking away land from the First Nations people (I don't think that's something we should be proud of and I think it's offensive to indigenous people). But now I know that it isn't so much about that. Thanksgiving is really just a time to be thankful for our fortunes, family, and health. I've been told that my whole life ... I'm just actually realizing it now.

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