<US>"The Hand," a Thanksgiving Story

  • From: "Fr. Pat Umberger" <frpat@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "Fr. Pat Umberger" <frpat@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 25 Nov 2008 19:37:37 -0600

.=:  U S U A L    S U S P E C T S  :=.
      from Father Pat Umberger      

"Round up the usual suspects"  ~"Casablanca," the movie


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A forward from member Peter from Webster, New York ...

      T H E     H A N D

Thanksgiving Day was near. The first grade teacher gave her class a fun
assignment -- to draw a picture of something for which they were thankful.

Most of the class might be considered economically disadvantaged, but still
many would celebrate the holiday with turkey and other traditional goodies
of the season. These, the teacher thought, would be the subjects of most of
her student's art. And they were.

But Douglas made a different kind of picture. Douglas was a different kind
of boy. He was the teacher's true child of misery, frail and unhappy. As
other children played at recess, Douglas was likely to stand close by her
side. One could only guess at the pain Douglas felt behind those sad eyes.

Yes, his picture was different. When asked to draw a picture of something
for which he was thankful, he drew a hand. Nothing else. Just an empty hand.

His abstract image captured the imagination of his peers. Whose hand could
it be? One child guessed it was the hand of a farmer, because farmers raise
turkeys. Another suggested a police officer, because the police protect and
care for people. Still others guessed it was the hand of God, for God feeds
us. And so the discussion went -- until the teacher almost forgot the young
artist himself.

When the children had gone on to other assignments, she paused at Douglas'
desk, bent down, and asked him whose hand it was.

The little boy looked away and murmured, "It's yours, teacher."

She recalled the times she had taken his hand and walked with him here or
there, as she had the other students. How often had she said, "Take my hand,
Douglas, we'll go outside." Or, "Let me show you how to hold your pencil."
Or, "Let's do this together." Douglas was most thankful for his teacher's

Brushing aside a tear, she went on with her work.

The story speaks of more than thankfulness. It says something about teachers
teaching and parents parenting and friends showing friendship, and how much
it means to the Douglases of the world. They might not always say thanks.
But they'll remember the hand that reaches out.

-- Author Unknown


Keep me in your prayers and know you're remembered in mine as well.   May
God continue to draw near to you and those you love and keep you safe!

All the best and God Bless,

Father Pat
        "Be still and know that I am God."  ~Psalm 46:10



May God Bless you and those you love, and keep you safe,

Father Pat

      "Be still and know that I am God." ~Psalm 46:10


U S U A L    S U S P E C T S

These are called “Usual Suspects” posts.  In the movie “Casablanca” when there 
was a problem the police chief said, “Round up the usual suspects.”  When 
forwarding inspiring e-mails I found I was sending them to the same people over 
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the name “Usual Suspects.”

The <US>Usual Suspects Group began as a separate e-mail list with..  A post or 
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