The true spirit of Christmas

To the editor:

Having lived in the Marshall area my entire life, I have heard of the generosity and kindness of the people of this area many times. But this past week, I experienced firsthand how local people come together to support those in need.

I work at United Way of Southwest Minnesota. The day after the tragic house fire near Lucan, our office received a call wondering if we would be willing to serve as a “drop-off” site for donations to the family who lost their home and so much more.

Although we had never done this before, we felt it would be awesome to be able to serve in this capacity! We felt it was the least we could do to help out a family in need.

Little did we know the outpouring of support that would follow. For three work days, we were overwhelmed with phone calls, emails, and people stopping by with donations. We have a list of over 45 offers of appliances and larger items to be donated to the family if they need them. We had cash/check/gift card donations totaling over $2,750 as of Wednesday of this week. The outpouring of support was above and beyond what I have ever experienced, and it brought tears to my eyes many times.

Phone calls from people offering everything from a house for the family to live in, couches, stoves, refrigerators, TVs, beds, tables, chairs, etc. Parents dropping off clothes and toys that their children picked out from their own rooms and wanted to give up because they felt so touched by the loss that this family has incurred and wanted to help ease their pain in any way possible. The donations of gift cards, cash and checks have also been amazing and will be so very helpful to the family.

To me, this is the true Spirit of Christmas.

I know, it’s not politically correct to term it in this manner, but I believe that Christ came to show us all how to love everyone around us in whatever way He’s given us to do that.

So, whether it’s a donation of $5, a child giving up a loved pair of pajamas, offers to give new beds or a house to live in, or prayers for the families involved, there is something that each one of us can do to help others, to show them loveand if we each do our part, it’s amazing what a difference it can make!

Merry Christmas to each of you! Thank you for your reminder to me of the true spirit of Christmas.

God bless.

Julie DeCock