Thanksgiving Message

November 23, 2022

Dear Gonzaga Students, Families and Colleagues,

Tomorrow, many in our nation will celebrate Thanksgiving: a national holiday that has its origins in harvest festivals and religious traditions, but was formalized by President Abraham Lincoln in an 1863 proclamation: 

… I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens …
Proclamation of October 3, 1863

Even in the context of a terrible civil war, President Lincoln saw many things for which to be thankful.  In modern times, it has become a day to express gratitude for the blessings in our lives, and in a special way those we love, and an opportunity to reflect on all that we have been given.

Over the past two and a half years, our campus community has labored through some very challenging times.  Students, staff, faculty, our Jesuits, families and community members have, throughout it all, kept the welfare and educational success of our students always at the fore.  I will always be proud of the strength and dedication I witnessed time and time again, from our faculty, staff, parents, alumni, fans and friends, and most especially our students, whose belief in our mission, in what we are here to do for this world, has continued to light the way.

While there is much to celebrate, holidays are also a time to remember those who are no longer with us, and all those who grieve their loss.  We are mindful too of those who do not enjoy abundance: the sick, the homeless, those who do not have enough to eat.  May we share what we have with these, keep them in our hearts, and always help them to know that they are not forgotten.

As we approach the official start of the holiday season, please know how grateful I am for you and the gifts that you share with the GU community.  No matter how you choose to celebrate, my hope is that you can take moments to pause and rest, returning rejuvenated as we prepare for the final few weeks of this fall semester.

I wish you and yours a very Happy Thanksgiving. May God bless you, your loved ones, and every member of the Gonzaga family. 

Sincerely yours,

Thayne M. McCulloh, D.Phil.