12/24/08 — The real Santa: Kindness is the real spirit behind Christmas

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The real Santa: Kindness is the real spirit behind Christmas

We read the stories every year -- hustling and bustling shoppers trying to find the latest gadgets, the best bargains, the perfect Christmas present.

And we get caught up ourselves, too, trying to create the perfect family Christmas, the best holiday meal, the most attractive front yard display.

And while all that is part of Christmas, it is not the most important part, not by a long shot.

What makes Christmas the best holiday for people of all ages are the love and caring that go along with it, the spirit that cannot be wrapped or tied with a ribbon.

And it could be found here, this year, in the many people who thought about others even when they were not sure of their own economic futures.

The scary economy did not stop this community from sharing the Christmas spirit with neighbors who needed assistance.

Thousands of dollars have been donated this year to make sure no child in Wayne County would sit beside a Christmas tree without a present or a holiday meal waiting for him or her.

Families facing economic hardship found surprising, unsolicited, gifts from random angels who were not looking for a tax deduction or acclaim -- just the chance to make someone else smile.

And even though many people cut back in their own giving, they made sure that those who did not have the means to provide a holiday for their own children were able to share in the joy that comes with watching a youngster get his or her first glimpse of Santa Claus.

That is the magic of Christmas.

There are many people who forget that the reason we celebrate this season involves a small baby born in a manger as the savior of the world.

They forget the story, the faith, the meaning behind all those Christmas songs.

They forget that this is a chance to celebrate God's love and His gift of hope.

But that, more than anything else, is what today is all about -- love, in all forms, for family, friends and complete strangers.

And it is a message we should never forget.

So tomorrow, as you rip paper, pull off ribbons and share a bountiful holiday meal with family and friends, pause to remember that spirit that brought you together -- and the love that will keep you going through the coming new year.

Vow to continue to spread the light and joy that make Christmas so special and to remember its message of hope and faith.

We here at the News-Argus wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year -- from our family to yours.

Published in Editorials on December 24, 2008 11:02 AM