by Lourdes Rodriguez-Nogues, President of DignityUSA
Gratitude is perhaps the humblest and most fitting prayer we can offer the Divine. It places us in that open and vulnerable space where we can, with open hands and hearts, recognize that we are not entitled, deserving, wanting of something, or expecting our needs to be met. If we can just give thanks, for what is and for what will be, we come face to face with a merciful, generous, and loving God who recognizes us as created, chosen, and redeemed.
"Thank you, God, for you have blessed me with life, faith, family, spouse, love, friendship, community. Thank you for the wonderful creation which surrounds me, reminding me of your bountiful gifts. I thank you for every challenge you offer me to live the values of the Gospel and for the opportunity to live my life out-loud with pride, joy, and passion. "
We all know, in the depths of our souls, what we are most thankful for. During this Thanksgiving holiday, let us take the time to say thank you to our God, and to those in our lives we are grateful for. Let us pause and find the most insignificant of gifts to be thankful for, knowing that they are gifts given to us by God out of love, and not because we deserve them. As we gather with our families, our friends, and our communities let us offer a prayer for our world so lost in greed, injustice, oppression, and pray for peace, justice, hope, and gratitude. It is when we lose ourselves in the spirit of true gratitude that we can truly see what others need.
All of us, who have the privilege of being the staff and Board of Directors of DignityUSA, take a moment at this holiday of Thanksgiving to be grateful for YOU. You, the church of Dignity, have blessed us with many gifts. You have challenged us, supported us, prayed for us. You have welcomed us in your pews and in your homes, and you have nurtured us with words and fed us with delicious nourishment. You have shared with us your hopes and visions of a living Body of Christ. You have been for us the face of Jesus in our world. You have generously emptied your pockets and your purses to get the work done. You have shown up, completely and without fear, to live your life as a LGBT Catholic. Our hearts are filled with gratitude. We give you thanks.
Celebrate the feast of giving thanks in your hearts, in your homes, in your communities with true joy. May you continue to be blessed and may you continue to spread your blessings to those you share this earthly journey with.
Que Dios te bendiga, hoy y siempre.