Thursday, 24 November 2011

JVO: Thanksgiving 2

Jewish Values Online ( is a website that asks the Jewish view on a variety of issues, some specifically Jewish and some from the world around us -- and then presents answers from each of the dominations of Judaism. Nishmablog's Blogmaster Rabbi Wolpoe serves as an Orthodox member of their Panel of Scholars, offering answers from our perspective.

This post is part of a weekly series on the Nishmablog presenting the questions to which he responded and the answers that he gave.

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Is there a special Jewish prayer that we can say at Thanksgiving dinner in commemoration that we were granted religious freedom in America?

Rabbi Wolpoe:

I would favor consulting Traditional Siddurim [Prayer Books] Jewish Prayers are filled with expressions of thanks.  Any recitation using them would accomplish Thanksgiving and incorporate a Jewish aspect.

For example, one could recite one or both of the "Modim" prayers.  Or the morning Modeh Ani prayer

My own favorite is Psalm 100 "Mizmor leTodah", a Psalm of Thanskgiving.  In particular  I enjoy Louis Lewandowski's awesome choral composition of same.  It is a most inspiring way to express gratitude.

And following dinner as we recite the "Birkat Hamazon" the 2nd Blessing is based upon the theme of   thanks - "Nodeh Lecha"

My in-laws "Did Thanksgiving" on the Friday Night Shabbat Dinner on the Day after the Secular Thursday.  There is perhaps no more Jewish way to celebrate Turkey Day than by having it as a Friday Night Shabbat Feast

I hope these help

Happy Thanksgiving


And here's a blog post on this theme

Making Thanksgiving into a Kiddush Hashem
« ...Kesher Israel Congregation (KI) in Harrisburg has found the perfect way to spend the day… They came up with the idea of providing a full Thanksgiving meal for those firefighters who would be spending Thanksgiving on call at the fire station rather than at home surrounded by family and friends. This novel idea resonated with the congregation...»



JVO Link

NishmaBlog: Making Thanksgiving into a Kiddush Hashem

Thanksgiving Kiddush Hashem | Hirhurim – Torah Musings

Shalom and Regards,


micha said...

If you recommend someone saying "Modim", shouldn't we advise them to stop before "Barukh atah", so as to avoid turning it into a berakhah levatalah?

David G. said...

Here's the latest on Kesher Israel's Thanksgiving program: