Thanksgiving Afterthoughts

     It’s right there in the name of the holiday: Thanksgiving Day is a day for giving thanks. But to give implies that there’s someone to receive. To whom shall our thanks be offered?

     Would anyone like a hint? Our supposedly Catholic president appears to need one:

     Since the first Thanksgiving on Plymouth Rock and its subsequent establishment as a day of thanks on Oct. 3, 1789, the recipient of that thanks on behalf of the United States of America has always been God.

     But in keeping with the destruction of everything good and virtuous in this nation, this year, God has been removed as the recipient of thanks on Thanksgiving.

     On Wednesday, President Biden released his Thanksgiving proclamation for 2023.

     For the first time in American history, the proclamation completely omitted any reference to God or faith.

     Some are shocked. I’m not. Biden’s Catholicism is insincere. That’s been clear since he entered politics. His ingressive senility makes little difference. But the Dementia-Patient-In-Chief is not the focus of my thoughts today.


     The evangelical atheists will be swarming for the next few weeks. The Christmas season brings them out of their warrens to berate the rest of us into accepting their faith. Apparently the idea of a celebration founded on the birth of the Son of God in human flesh is just too much for them.

     I could go into an extended rant about why the birth of Jesus of Nazareth was a big deal, entirely worth celebrating, but I’ll spare you. Suffice it to say that His travels, miracles, and teachings transformed the world. Should our species be permitted to continue for a few centuries more (a proposition that’s begun to look dubious) His words will continue to travel, penetrate, and exalt the minds and hearts of men. And that really pisses off the militant atheists.

     You want proof? There’s plenty. The exploding revival of Christian belief nationwide should suffice. A fair amount of that is in reaction to the Left’s infiltration of the churches. The reaction has been a firmer binding among the faithful to the Redeemer’s teachings. Laymen are surging out of the pews to shape up their clergy! They will not stand for a secularized, politicized church.

     Then there’s the strange, or perhaps not strange at all, case of Reverorum ib Malacht. That’s a “black metal” band from Poland which once made blasphemy the thematic core of its music. The band’s members studied the Catholic faith closely, that they might blaspheme it better…and converted one and all to Catholicism. Imagine that.

     It seems that any man who lives the Christian faith, and who’s willing to talk humbly about what he believes, can be an effective promulgator thereof. It’s not his Aquinas-like reasoning or his eloquence that does the job. It’s the power of the Gospels: Christ’s teachings themselves.

     And what is the heart of those teachings?

     But when the Pharisees had heard that he had put the Sadducees to silence, they were gathered together. Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying, Master, which is the great commandment in the law?
     Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets. [Matthew 22:34-40]

     The Christian faith, which is founded on the secret to happiness and good will toward others, has a power that can break all resistance. Ask the members of Reverorum ib Malacht.


     The antithesis of gratitude isn’t ingratitude but resentment. The forces that seek to destroy our nation and doom our world spread resentment over everyone and everything, like rancid peanut butter. They encourage us to think we’re owed and unfairly burdened…that anyone who’s done well must have victimized others of lesser attainments. Here! In the land where opportunity is everywhere and only coercive interference can prevent us from capitalizing on it!

     The success they’ve had among Americans is frightening. The implications for their effectiveness among others who really have been sorely tried are terrifying. And the foundation of their successes lies in turning us away from God.

     Still, one must acknowledge their cleverness. There have been many religions throughout recorded history. Each has had its own conception of God or gods. And so verbally nimble evangelists such as Stephen Roberts say things such as this:

     “I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours.”

     But a logically minded person will respond even more penetratingly:

     “Those other conceptions of God fail under rational examination. That doesn’t mean that there is no God. What matters isn’t the profusion of creeds, but the strength or weakness of the evidence for each of them.”

     Compare that to the fulminations of Richard Dawkins:

     Science, after all, is an empirical endeavor that traffics in probabilities. The probability of God, Dawkins says, while not zero, is vanishingly small. He is confident that no Flying Spaghetti Monster exists. Why should the notion of some deity that we inherited from the Bronze Age get more respectful treatment?

     Dawkins has been talking this way for years, and his best comebacks are decades old. For instance, the Flying Spaghetti Monster is a variant of the tiny orbiting teapot used by Bertrand Russell for similar rhetorical duty back in 1952. Dawkins is perfectly aware that atheism is an ancient doctrine and that little of what he has to say is likely to change the terms of this stereotyped debate. But he continues to go at it. His true interlocutors are not the Christians he confronts directly but the wavering nonbelievers or quasi believers among his listeners – people like me, potential New Atheists who might be inspired by his example.

     But science is not “an empirical endeavor that traffics in probabilities.” It’s founded on a rigorous technique for observation, inference, and the testing of hypotheses. And so a genuine logician would respond:

     There is no way to determine “the probability that God exists.” That would require:

  • The attribution of a specific, spatiotemporally based definition to God;
  • Deductions from that definition about what circumstances “should” evoke a manifestation of God;
  • A tally of observed manifestations of God and failures to observe such manifestations.

     But you have to understand induction, inference, and deduction – the bones of the scientific method – to understand that…and these are apparently things of which Richard Dawkins is ignorant.


     I could go on, and sometimes I do. But there’s no need. The point has been made. An open mind concerns itself with logic and evidence, not contemptuous dismissals that evade such things.

     But there is this as well: Sometimes, some of what persuades a man to accept that God exists is internal, and thus not demonstrable. Yet such private experiences are important phenomena. They’re no less real than love or desire; they’re just not usable in argument. That leads us to another question:

Has any atheist had a private experience of
No God?
What was it like, pray tell?
Who opened the heavens to say:
I do not exist — ?

     Don’t hold your breath awaiting an answer.

     Once God is admitted, gratitude – and thanksgiving – must follow.

     May He bless and keep you all.


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  1. An excellent piece here, as usual, Francis. Are you aware of E. Michael Jones and Culture Wars Magazine/Fidelity Press?

    1. Now I am, Alex. Thanks!

      1. You’re welcome! I think you’ll enjoy it.

    • 0007 on November 24, 2023 at 8:03 AM

    considering how often the latest “finding of science have been proven to be fraudulent or outright lies, I would say that dawkins and friends are on very shaky ground.

    • Mad Celt on November 24, 2023 at 9:24 AM

    Even if Jesus was the fake so many opponents claim Him to be why has His teachings survived 1900+ years when true fakers tend to dissipate within their lifetimes?

    1. An excellent point.

    • Skeptic on November 26, 2023 at 4:10 PM

    I am convinced that a big part of the motivation for atheism is the desire to appear much smarterer than those “dumb” believers around them. They will use the ridiculous (such as the Flying Spaghetti Monster), but struggle mightily to engage a serious discussion regarding their own faith – and yes, it is a faith.

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