Christian Educators Encourage Teachers to Teach Real History of Thanksgiving

( [email protected] ) Nov 27, 2003 09:24 AM EST

Is discussing Thanksgiving in class violating the Constitution? Christian Educators Association International (CEAI) is taking action to defend teachers who are censored or prohibited from discussing history of Thanksgiving.

Since Thanksgiving was founded to give thanks to God, some public school districts have told teachers that it would be violating “separation of church and state” to talk about history of Thanksgiving and its tradition. However the head of a Christian educators group is encouraging teachers not to fear about teaching the true meaning of Thanksgiving in the classroom.

Finn Laursen, executive director of the CEAI says to teach about the pilgrims who established the Plymouth Colony and wrote the Mayflower Compact is to teach real history.

"It's part of our national heritage," the director says, "and [the pilgrims] certainly were giving thanks to God. That ought to be shared, or you would miss that whole historical issue and many of the traits that we'd love to see in our citizens of today, of thankfulness to God."

The head of the Christian educators group is challenging teachers to take advantage of the opportunity to discuss the meaning of the Thanksgiving holiday with their students. By doing so, the students would be reminded of the heritage of the great American republic.

"That would not be any violation at all to bring up those issues in a classroom," Laursen says, "to discuss them, to see how that that's part of our heritage. The issue is -- and I think this is a wonderful protection for everyone, including Christians -- that educators cannot take their personal beliefs and use their position to shove them down anyone's throat. However you can certainly discuss them in the context of the history of our nation."