Take the Gratitude Challenge

The Diocese of Pittsburgh’s communications and community relations department is hosting its third annual 30 Days of Gratitude Challenge, Nov. 1-30, help people focus on the blessings they have received from God.

“It’s been wonderful to see how the Challenge has grown,” said Theresa Sullivan, digital media strategist.  “We have received an overwhelmingly positive response the past two years, and we want to reach even more this year.”

The challenge is offered online, across diocesan FacebookTwitter, and Instagram accounts and features daily posts and regular video reflections on gratitude.

New this year, people can register to receive text messages with a different focus each week:

Nov. 1-6: Gratitude and Prayer
Nov. 7-13: Gratitude in Action
Nov. 14-20: Gratitude in Relationships
Nov. 21-27: Gratitude for the Eucharist
Nov. 28-30: Gratitude Challenge Reflections

Nearly 500 people have already registered for the Gratitude Challenge.

Medical research shows that people who practice gratitude on a regular basis experience a positive impact on their own mental and physical health, and share those benefits with family, friends and co-workers.

The concept of gratitude is central to the Christian faith. The word “Eucharist” comes from the Greek for “thanksgiving.” Gratitude is a humble and happy response to what we receive.  It recognizes the source of the gift, which strengthens our relationship with God and with the people who bring blessings to our lives.   

“Especially at a time when many are weary and struggling to accept new ‘normals,’ reflecting on the many blessings around us is important,” said Jennifer Antkowiak, executive director of communications and community relations.  “Giving thanks helps us feel happier, more hopeful and helps us to open our hearts to Jesus.”

People who have taken part in previous Gratitude Challenges have expressed appreciation for how the messages and reflections helped them:   

“Thank you for these words of peace!” Barbara said.

“Always gratitude first!” Carol responded to a social media post.

To receive Gratitude text messages people can text “Gratitude2021” to 84576.