Bishop Dee Pederson’s Thanksgiving Message

Corn Field at Harvest

Many of us grew up praying “Come, Lord Jesus” as our table prayer, or grace, at mealtimes. Recently I learned this little prayer has a second verse that lifts our eyes from our table to the tables of others.

I am so grateful that serving in this ministry takes me out on the highways and county roads that stretch across the Southwestern Minnesota Synod. From spring to summer and on into the fall, the fields reveal the many stages of growing crops. And really, wherever we live in the Southwestern Minnesota Synod – in cities, open country, or small towns – we don’t need to travel far to see how the people of this region help put food on tables around the world. Many of those who farm this area represent the third or fourth generation who do this work 24/7. It is a walk of faith, undertaken to ensure there will be food “on every table everywhere.”

However you spend these days of giving thanks, perhaps this will be your table prayer.

We enter this Thanksgiving week, profoundly aware that tables are empty for millions around the world. Our ELCA partners – Lutheran World Relief, Lutheran Disaster Response, and ELCA World Hunger – bring blessings to people in places we cannot go. Food shelves in our church buildings and in our communities bring aid to people locally. They all need our support. So wherever you give thanks to God for your blessings, may you join others to take action and live out this prayer for people nearby and around the world.

May you gather, giving thanks to God, the Creator of heaven and earth; the + Son who gives Life, and the Spirit which continues to make us one.

Wishing you and yours a blessed Thanksgiving –

+ Bp. Dee Pederson

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