Giving Thanks

At this time of year, Americans are encouraged to give thanks. It is a good thing to be aware of what we have been blessed with and to be thankful for our many blessings. Let us not only give thanks, and encourage our children to give thanks, but let us also remember to WHOM we are giving thanks.

The Akathist of Thanksgiving is a beautiful way to begin to consider all that God has given to us, and to begin to offer back to Him thanks for His generosity. If you have not yet prayed this beautiful akathist, consider doing so with your family, during this time of thanksgiving. It is truly a treasure, as each Kontakion and Ikos leads the pray-er to consider yet another way in which God has richly provided for them.

The history of the Akathist deepens the challenge to anyone praying it. “This Akathist is also called the “Akathist of Thanksgiving.” The author was Metropolitan Tryphon (Prince Boris Petrovich Turkestanov). It contains biographical references to his childhood illness and family life, as well as other material. A copy of this hymn, in samizdat form, was amongst the belongings of the priest Grigori Petrov, who died in a Soviet prison camp in 1940, and has been sometimes attributed to him. The title is from the words of Saint John Chrysostom as he was dying in exile. Thanksgiving and Prayer as a celebration is understood perhaps best by one from whom all beauty is seemingly denied; a song of praise from amidst the most terrible sufferings.” ~ from http://orthodoxyinrolla.org/wp/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/Akathist-%E2%80%94-Glory-to-God-for-All-Things.pdf

Download a copy of the Akathist at http://orthodoxyinrolla.org/wp/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/Akathist-%E2%80%94-Glory-to-God-for-All-Things.pdfor http://www.saintjonah.org/services/thanksgiving.htm. Listen to it at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gPBkkDViWNI. A CD copy (and additional history of the Akathist) is available at http://store.ancientfaith.com/cd-akathist-of-thanksgiving/

This week, let us join those around us in giving thanks. May we be thankful, but may we also remember to offer that thanksgiving to God, regardless of the circumstances in which we find ourselves. If people suffering the persecution of the Russian revolution can be thankful enough to God to write a hymn like this, surely we can join in and offer our thanks! Glory to God for all things!

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