It was once common for votive plaques to be fitted in churches in thanksgiving for graces received. An object might take the place of a plaque: a crutch showing that the owner had no further use for it, a photograph of a long-awaited child.

An essential passage in the Gospel is the one in which Jesus, between Samaria and Galilee, asks the cleansed leper come to thank him: ‘Were not ten cleansed? Where are the nine?’ (Lk 17:17).

I love this unpretentious ensemble. Loud gestures are not always needed to give thanks. Sometimes a pine cone says it all.

What matters is the consciousness of having been graced, then the capacity to respond graciously.