Thanksgiving at the End of November: A Secular or Religious Holiday? (With an Appendix about Halloween) by Rabbi Michael J. Broyde
Thanksgiving is a uniquely American holiday. It is no longer (and perhaps never was) a celebration affiliated with any particular religion or faith, although some in America celebrate with religious ceremonies. On a social level, it is celebrated by Americans of a broad variety of religious backgrounds. This article discusses the halachic issues related to the different forms of celebrating Thanksgiving that one witnesses in America currently. In particular, this article will focus on whether the holiday of Thanksgiving is essentially a religious holiday, a secular holiday, or an ambiguous one… (more)