Williamsburg's Homeless & Indigent

P.O. Box 366, Lightfoot, VA 23090
Office: 757-561-3255
"Assisting people in re-gaining hope and a better way of life."

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

An Added Response To An Article In The Dog Street Journal

I am writing in response to Sean Conners "Can't Buy Me Love". Yes, throughout the years the holidays have become much more commercialized. At each beginning of a new generation, it becomes worse. When I was younger, we didn't ask for video games, computers, or any other of the latest techie items. That came many years later and I am only 37!

I personally have made 100 lbs of old fashioned hard candy as a Christmas gift for friends and neighbors since I was 13 years old. Two years ago, when I distributed it to my neighbores in Williamsburg, they thought I was crazy, although they loved the candy! At Thanksgiving, my husband and I made cinnamon knots and took out to our neighborhood friends and all plates came back empty. You probably don't remember this, but there was a time if a neighbor gave you something on a plate, the plate was to be returned with something in kind. Those days are gone with the advancing of technology. Even today we send e-mail Christmas cards instead of hand-made or even store bought ones.

Holidays have become like music. My Grandfather didn't like my father listening to Lawrence Welk (it was too upbeat.) My parents didn't like my siblings listening to The Beatles or Elvis (God forbid they had too much movement); nor did they like me bouncing off the walls to The Clash, Cure or The Smiths. Today, I can't stand the ultra funk rap or alternative music. Tomorrow, your children will be complaining about something to your grandchildren. It is the nature of the beast, or so they say the 'sins of our fathers'.

I can though name some who appreciate hand-made or even a small gift, no matter what the cost: orphans, abused children, terminally ill, and the homeless. Instead of making cookies with family, why not go to the terminally ill unit at a hospital or a nursing home with your family and sing Christmas carols (they don't care how you sing.) Or go read the story of the birth of Christ to a group of orphans, in many ways they can relate. Or volunteer at a soup kitchen and sit down with somebody who is homeless and show you really care about them, because they are human.

The people we consider our family are grateful for many things; mostly the little things such as they woke up for another day, they didn't freeze through the night, they had a warm meal before they went to sleep, they had a hug that day and they gained a little more hope than the day before. Even though we will be evicted shortly after Christmas for having 19+ homeless people living with us, my husband and I are grateful that we can afford a weekly motel to move into, once again we will be united with our 'family' and we have the strength to continue the effort to bring hope to those who are hopeless.

What so many of us forget is that Christmas is truly about hope. Hope that was brought to us that night when a baby was born with a great star above him to lead many others to his troft. A barn is where it began to give all of us grace as a eternal gift and mercy as our blankets. We all need to stope commercializing and start Christ-lizing the true meanings of the days marked as holidays.


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