Dia de Gracias 2009


“This Thanksgiving feast is happening at the orphanage because one day while we, the kids the nun and I, were working digging up rocks and planning our garden Sister Edith asked me when our Dia de Gracias was held (there is no Day of Gracias celebration in Honduras).  Looking up I told her it was on the last Thursday of November.  This was in October.  She told me: “I would like to cook a turkey.”  I asked her if she had ever cooked a turkey before.  She replied “no.”  But she liked the idea of a day of thanks and wanted to learn.  I asked my PCV companera Regina if she could teach the nun how to cook a turkey: my cooking skills are limited to meat loaf and jello-type dishes.  The rest is history.  I would like to ask everyone to try and forget about the materialistic throw-away society from which we are temporarily absent and concentrate on the goodness of folk who put the welfare of those more unfortunate than ourselves at the forefront.  Dollars are a fleeting solace, the spirit of human kindness lasts forever.  Thank you for wanting to participate in the very first Thanksgiving dinner with the Fundacion Senor San Jose’s children of the orphanage who have never tasted turkey before, and who daily ask me what turkey tastes like.”  I sent this email to the ten PCVs who elected to join in our celebration.  The kitchen in the bottom right was provided to us by a friend who lives across the street from the orphanage.  We then transported all the food (three turkeys with all the fixings) and after a prayer from Sister Edith we fed the children first.  This Thanksgiving Day the spirit of the occasion rose in all of us as we joined in a blessed event eternally grateful to be allowed to share bread together in thanks.

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About Fortunato Velasquez

Fortunato Velasquez received his Registered Nurse's license from the State of California during the month that Neil Armstrong walked on the moon. On February 15, 2020, my friend and the director of the Fundación Señor San José in La Paz, La Paz, Honduras, Sister Edith Suazo Fernandez died at the age of 47. https://youtu.be/Poqcf0vn0qQ This a video of her funeral.

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