Center for World Thanksgiving

Who knew there was a place called The Center for World Thanksgiving? Not I! But it exists, in Dallas, Texas.

Back in 1964, four Dallas businessmen started talking together about how the Ancient World had squares and community gathering places where people could look beyond themselves, devoting themselves to spirit and worship. They decided they’d like to create a place where people could give “thanks to the Creator for the gift of life while recognizing the gift of consciousness and care for others.” 1 They began with the idea of a square, and ended up with a distinctive Spiral Chapel of Thanksgiving.

The group that initiated the idea became known as “Thanks-Giving,” to emphasize giving and living thanks as a value in all faiths and cultures. From that group, Anne Armstrong presented a book of all the past Presidential Thanksgiving and Prayer Proclamations to President Ford. As a result, they were asked to provide a draft for the President’s annual Proclamation of Thanksgiving. They also encouraged President-Elect Reagan to hold the National Day of Prayer at the same time each spring.

As it had done for other religions, in 1980 Thanks-Giving opened the Chapel on Fridays to Muslim prayers.

The recipient of various awards, the Thanks-Giving Foundation offers resources for people of different backgrounds to “heal divisions and enhance mutual understanding.”

Betsy Schwarzentraub

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