Saturday, November 7, 2009

Thinking about Thanksgiving

I submitted the following for our monthly Knights of Columbus newsletter.

In late September and early October I was able to accompany Bishop Warfel on a trip to India. It truly was an eye opening experience. I think it gives a whole new perspective of have vs. have not.

The area we visited had a literacy rate of about 30%. I visited a home for a family of four. The room was about 14 feet by 25 feet. One corner had a floor drain and a 1/3 height cement wall to cordon off the area for bathing and doing dishes from the rest of the house. They had electricity. This was nice compared to the rural areas where the houses were huts with no water or electricity. Water could be 100 yards away, or a half mile away. Bathing was often done at the local water pump, or in a river, or puddle of stagnant water. A lot of people walked, some used oxes or motorcycles to get around. A few had cars in the rural areas.

Sometimes we think that we are missing a lot in life. We have education. We have multi-room houses with running water and electricity. We have the ability to have hot showers in our private bathrooms. We have means to travel around town, around the state and even around the country.

As we look ahead to the end of the month, perhaps we should take a moment or two to think about why we should be giving thanks. If we think about things we want, it might again be a time to ask are they things that we need. As we look at what we have, perhaps we can think about helping those who have not.
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