Mid-week Message

Greetings!

We must always give thanks to God for you, brothers and sisters, as is right, because your faith is growing abundantly, and the love of everyone of you for one another is increasing.” - 2 Thessalonians 1:3

In his Thanksgiving message, the Moderator of the 2021 General Assembly shared about learning the Indigenous word “Miigwetch.” The closest English translation is “thank you”, but that doesn’t quite capture the meaning of this word. In Ojibwe culture, people believe that the Creator has given gifts to all of us. When they say Miigwetch to each other, they are saying: thank you for the gift you are sharing with me. But it goes beyond that because the word thanks the Creator at the same time. So it really means: thank you to the Creator for blessing me through the gifts you have been given that you have shared with me. Embedded in the Ojibwe language is an acknowledgement that all that we have and do comes from God, the Creator. When they thank each other, they do not just thank the person, but they thank God for working through the person at the same time. The Apostle Paul wrote this way to the churches a lot, beginning his letters by saying, “I thank God for you…” and then listing things the congregation had been doing. Since Greek doesn’t have a simple way of thanking God for the gifts God has blessed him with through others, Paul usually writes a paragraph about it. But Indigenous languages in North America share this one word, Miigwetch, to express this kind of Thanksgiving. As we give thanks during this time of Thanksgiving, let us say Miigwetch, giving thanks to God at the same time. Grace and peace,

Rev. Sarina

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