Sunday, December 6, 2009

The Colors of Thanksgiving

We praise you, O Lord, for all your works are wonderful.
We praise you, O Lord, forever is your love.

The colors of Thanksgiving. On Thanksgiving I went to church, to give thanks for the many blessings in my life, and was treated to a wonderful program that tied in the colors of our life to the liturgy. Afterward, I asked Sister Mary Rose if she'd written it, and I could have a copy to share here.

To explain, she had someone process down the aisle with an object representing each of the following colors, colors that matched the programs we were handed as we entered the worship space. Those objects were:

A Green Plant
A Yellow Basket
An Orange Pumpkin
Red Apples
A Brown Floral Arrangement
A Blue Votive Candle
White Mums
Purple Grapes

What follows are the words that accompanied these symbolic objects. I hope you'll take the time to reflect on them, and will get as much out of them as I did.
Today’s Liturgy is both a HOLIDAY and a HOLY DAY. For people throughout our land,
today traditionally marks the day on which we, as a nation, pause to give thanks for the bounty of the earth.

Those of us who have gathered in THIS sacred this moment in time...are also gathered to give thanks for the gifts that come to us from the goodness of God.

In the spring, GREEN symbolizes breaking from the shackles of winter. At this time of year, it represents bounty...and hope...and the promise of victory of life over death.

YELLOW conveys energy and warmth...and is the symbol of light and purity. It speaks of youth...and happiness...and harvest...and hospitality.

Symbolic of endurance and strength, ORANGE is the color of fire and flame...and represents the red of passion, tempered by the yellow of wisdom.

Signifying spiritual awakening, RED testifies to the joy of life and love.

BROWN represents the earth and the humility of those who work the land. It reminds us that God is connected to the common things in life...and so are we.

Inspiring us with insight and freedom, BLUE symbolizes honesty and integrity and reliability. We have also come to associate this color with loyalty and enduring commitment.

WHITE calls to mind all that is pure, and innocent...and for this reason, it is often associated with the newness of life.

PURPLE brings to mind valor and bravery. Used by royalty, nobility and the church, PURPLE enhances many celebrations of rich ceremony and deep penitence.

And then, after Mass, these blessings were bestowed.

Upon you, whose program covers are YELLOW and ORANGE: I ask God to bless you with the grace you need to bring light to a darkened part of God’s world, filling it with understanding, and renewing it with an energy that will bring others to Jesus, the true Light.

Upon you, whose program covers are GREEN and BROWN: I ask God to give you the gifts that will nurture life and hope in others. May you stay rooted in the values of the Gospel and be always grateful for the common and the ordinary things of life.

Upon you, whose program covers are RED and BLUE: I ask God to make you strong in your commitment to live in imitation of Christ. May your love extend to those most in need of your compassion and care.

Upon you, whose program covers are WHITE and PURPLE: I ask God to bless you with new life as you face today...and every God’s chosen people. May you rejoice in the blessings God has shown you, and become instruments of goodness and peace.

My cover was blue, and I extend my love and blessings to you, as we progress through Advent and into the busiest and one of the most holiest times of the year, Christmas.


Hywela Lyn said...

What a beautiful idea Liana.
We don't have a Thanksgiving Celebration in the UK, but this color theme could be used on any occasion to remind us to give thanks for what we have and to try to pass on some of those gifts to others.
Thanks for sharing this lovely idea.

carmenromeo said...

What a beautiful way to express colors in our way of thanking God for all that he has bestowed upon us.It is so creative and inspiring.
And yes,I,as her brother have always known of her ability to do such awesome work.She has helped me greatly in some of my own endeavors
Carmen A Romeo,MD