Thanksgiving Day Service

November 26, 2020
End:  November 26, 2020
Genre:  Other
Pieterskerk Leiden
Pieterskerkhof 1A
2311 SP Leiden

It is not yet clear in what form the Thanksgiving Day Service will take place in the Pieterskerk.


The Thanksgiving Day Service in the Pieterskerk Leiden is non-denominational service on Thanksgiving morning at the historic Pieterskerk in Leiden. For Americans, Thanksgiving at the Pieterskerk in Leiden is unique. In that church, the Pilgrims recorded their births, marriages and deaths and lived in its near surroundings from 1609 to 1620. The Pilgrims played an important role in the beginning of the colonization of North America.

The Leiden origin of Thanksgiving
In Leiden, the Pieterskerk Leiden has held a service of thanks since 1574 in honour of the Relief of Leiden. Many experts claim that the Pilgrims were inspired by the Leiden celebration on 3 October and that the celebration of Thanksgiving, which they started in America in 1621, was based on that. George Washington made it a national holiday in 1789. 

National Day of Mourning 
Since 1970 the Native Americans of New England organise The National Day of Mourning on the fourth Thursday of November, the same day as Thanksgiving in the United States. The organizers consider the national holiday of Thanksgiving Day as a reminder of the oppression and continued suffering of the Native American people. Participants in the National Day of Mourning honour Native ancestors and the struggles of Native people to survive today.