Kapp,Diana. “The Art of Raising Children with an Attitude of Gratitude,”Wall Street Journal [New York] 24 Dec. 2013: D1-D3. .
In this Christmas Eve article Ms. Kapp addresses how people with financial means can teach their children to live lives of gratitude and generosity.  She recommends having children list things they are thankful for each evening at the family table.  A 2008 study published in the Journal of
Psychology demonstrated that after only two weeks the children who did this
every evening were substantially more grateful and generous. It turns out that
writing thank you notes is also a great measure of thankfulness. The article
also notes that on-line shopping has made understanding the value of objects
more difficult for young children.  But the heart of the article is the harsh reality that in teaching children to be grateful:  parents cannot give their kids
something they do not have themselves.
Now for a joke… A man visited the pastor, a woman well-known for her charitable impulses.
“Pastor,” he said in a broken voice, “I wish to draw your attention to the terrible plight of a poor family in this neighborhood. The father is dead, the mother is too ill to work, and the nine children are starving. They are about to be turned into the cold, empty streets unless someone pays their rent, which
amounts to $900.”
“How terrible!” exclaimed the preacher. “May I ask who you are?”

The sympathetic visitor applied his handkerchief to his eyes. “I’m the landlord,” he sobbed.

Pastor Mark Anderson
Assistant to the Bishop

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About The Rev. Dr. Joelle Colville-Hanson

The Rev. Dr. Joelle Colville-Hanson has been Director for Evangelical Mission, ELCA for the Northeastern Iowa Synod since late 2013. Part of her job description is to help leaders and congregations use social media and other digital means for outreach and mission. She writes and edits this blog as well as runs the social media accounts for the synod.

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