Thanksgiving 'Prayers' for Secular Families


I recently became a member of a Facebook group called Mothers Beyond Belief, sort of an offshoot of Dale McGowan's Parenting Beyond Belief community. It's an online support group for secular moms. So last week the mother of a 5-year-old shared that her daughter wanted to say a "pray" before meals. The family doesn't believe, and therefore doesn't pray, so the mom was looking for other things the family could say instead. I loved the question, especially in light of this particular holiday. Thanksgiving dinner is one of those meals so extraordinary that it practically cries out for some type of deeper acknowledgement. At my house, we usually end up toasting the cook, which is infinitely appropriate but also lacks the power of prayer. Something about joining your hands and closing your eyes and really thinking about what's been done for you on that day, and throughout the year.

In that spirit, I thought I'd give you a few kid-friendly secular prayers — the first two came out of the Facebook thread, the second two courtesy of Maybe you'll use them today. Maybe you won't. But isn't it nice to have the option? Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.

Now we come together We are glad to see each other. All the good things that we share, come to us with love and care.

Earth we thank you for our food, for work and play and all that's good, for wind and rain and sun above, but most all for those we love.

We love our bread. We love our butter. But most of all, we love each other.

Thank you for the food we eat. Thank you for the friends we meet. Thank you for the birds that sing. We give thanks for everything.