Will You Join Me?

Date posted: Saturday 21 November 2020

Last Thanksgiving presented a challenge of a lifetime. Having lived alone throughout my adult life, I have never been the obvious host for a large gathering of friends and family. But 2019 presented a rare opportunity. Many family and friends from out of town were coming to the Twin Cities, and as one of my nieces put it, my house was the ideal location for hosting 18 guests from eight different households. She was right. By moving all the furniture in my dining and living rooms, sliding three tables together, a single table stretched across both rooms, creating an extended board where all could gather. From a toddler to a nonagenarian matriarch, we gave thanks for many gifts that day.


Thanksgiving 2020 will be another experience of a lifetime, as I set a single place setting and join family by Zoom for conversations across two continents. Governor Tim Walz has asked us Minnesotans to stay home this holiday and to gather only with those in our immediate household. I will do just that because you matter to me. In fact, the well-being of all our neighbors matters to me and right now we are being overwhelmed by the spread of the COVID-19 virus.


Will you join me? I don’t mean join me at my table. I mean join me in staying home and letting the prudence of this public health mandate slow the pandemic’s spread. This is a time for caution and restraint, for wearing our masks, washing our hands, and keeping safe distance from one another. Not forever, of course, but for a while longer.


On Thanksgiving Day, as I have done for years, I am going to give thanks for many gifts in my life. Some of those gifts are unique to this strange year. In 2020 I give thanks to God for frontline health care workers and epidemiologists, elected officials and mask makers, conscientious neighbors and school teachers, emergency responders and cable repair crews, citizens who rally for the common good and truth tellers of every age. We all have much to be thankful for and many to whom we owe a debt of gratitude for seeing us through these messy days. May you stay home and stay well.


In God’s service,

Bishop Patricia Lull