Every December people struggle with Christmas. Not everyone feels the Christmas spirit in a positive way.
It’s hard to beat the spirit of giving as an antidote. The week before Christmas brought an outpouring of generosity and good will. From busy people and organizations came a bounty of help and hospitality.
On Dec 17 Phil’s Diner held its annual free Christmas dinner. Staff planned for 700, plates were prepared for takeout, and meals were set aside for delivery. The Gift of Grace soup kitchen welcomed 75. The Salvation Army and St. Vincent de Paul distributed 135 hampers. The Penetanguishene soup kitchen welcomed 75 through their doors. Wendat’s Wednesday dinner was attended by about 100. The Native Friendship Centre hosted 350. Covenant Church served about 35 for their brunch program. At Out of the Cold over the week before Christmas, we served up 205, along with Christmas treats and big helpings of support and goodwill.
The total for the week approaches 2,000 meals: 2,000 people made welcome at a Christmas celebration, 2,000 people for whom Christmas had a little genuine cheer in it, 2,000 people who have reason to feel a little bit better about the world.
The meaning of Christmas gets a little clearer when you look at the holiday through the lens provided by these generous and loving people. It’s something to be proud of and to take as a personal challenge for our own participation throughout 2013.