For Educators

Thanking God Ahead of Time


He was quiet, gentle, unassuming. His seminary superiors hesitated to recommend him, his low grades and poor academics had them question his ability to serve as a priest. He was ordained a simplex priest – unable to preach publicly or hear confessions. But Solanus Casey was grateful for his vocation as a Capuchin friar and priest of Jesus Christ.

Father Solanus spent most of his priestly life in humble service in parishes and monasteries in New York and Detroit. He served as doorkeeper and sacristan, training altar boys, working in the soup kitchen. Soon, his reputation for holiness exploded and people flocked to the monastery to talk to the gentle, quiet priest. His advice was simple, and his prayers were powerful. His deep trust in God’s providence allowed him to practice a radical gratitude. Often, people coming to him with requests were told, no doubt with a twinkle in his eye, to “thank God ahead of time.” 

This week of Thanksgiving marks the beginning of the holiday seasons – a busy time for families and teachers. Before the chaos of December, take time to practice gratitude, and even to thank God ahead of time. See if you can make a list of 100 things you are grateful for, or go through the alphabet A-Z. And when things get busy in the next few weeks, take a few minutes and say a prayer of gratitude.

Blessed Solanus Casey, Pray for Us!

For a free worksheet to help your family practice virtue, click here.