It is that time of year again when children around the world await the arrival of Santa Claus. Youngsters dream of the jolly and rosy cheeked fellow who places presents under the tree. Already in Newark, New Jersey we are seeing signs of Santa Claus as there are many holiday decorations of this merry fellow at businesses and public buildings. At shopping centers in New Jersey and throughout the United States, children are posing for that classic photo with Santa, the photo that families will send to there loved ones during the holiday season. Santa is more than just a figure that brings children joy; Santa is a symbol of healing in a world where there is violence, war, poverty and sickness. Santa gives hope to people in a world where some have lost hope. It is a world where some have never even felt love.
During this holiday season, we remember those who are less fortunate with acts of kindness. When we help the needy, then the rosy cheeked fellow smiles back at us. There are those who help others the entire year, not only during the holiday season. Those doctors and researchers who work tirelessly around the clock to try to find cures for life threatening illnesses such as AIDS and cancer as well as other debilitating illnesses are giving the gift of hope to their patients.
The affluent and celebrities who not only think of themselves but who use their wealth to start nonprofit organizations to help others have the holiday spirit the entire year. Some wealthy people even donate millions to help fight diseases in impoverished lands. Others use their stardom to support good causes and inspire others to give back.
You do not have to be famous to make a difference in the world, for every small gesture of goodwill counts as well. Helping someone carry the groceries out of the supermarket or opening the door for a stranger really brightens someone’s day. Those who volunteer and selflessly donate their time are Santa’s helpers. Those who peacefully protest for good causes such as trying to save animals, helping to heal our fragile planet or other good causes bring harmony to our world.
The holiday spirit is seen in the bravery of firefighters who save lives as well as the policemen and policewomen who keep us safe on the streets. The heroism of rescuers who save people from natural disasters gives others the gift of life and renewed hope. To live in a democracy and experience freedom is a gift that our brave servicemen and servicewomen give us every single day of the year.
When someone from the military is reunited with their family, we feel the holiday spirit. When a patient who had cancer receives a cancer free diagnosis, we rejoice in holiday joy. When someone who was forgotten in society is finally remembered, we are deeply touched. All these feelings of goodwill to mankind are inspired by the jovial character in the red suit. Do you still believe in Santa Claus?