|Mia & Grace at the Atlantic Hotel in Berlin, MD|
St. Anthony of Padua said, “Love is eternal; so that without love, all efforts are vain, no matter how much good we accomplish.” Love is what lies beneath the surface at Christmas, and best flourishes in the spirit of humility.
Every year someone will invariably proclaim disgust regarding the commercialization of Christmas, but I generally ignore these proclamations. Commercialism doesn’t diminish Christmas. It’s rarely the presents or shopping or decorations that we recall in our Christmas memories. It’s always the people we remember, and the experiences shared with people; experiences that occur when possessions and the trappings of this world are stripped away, and humility – the true understanding of who we are – arises and creates magic moments where time stands still.
These become our Christmas memories… the affirmation of a child’s imagination, school pageants, singing Christmas carols, little hands gripping the banister during the rush downstairs on Christmas morning, family dinners and gatherings, the first Christmas away from home, the first Christmas in a new home… these are the things we remember, and it’s the warmth of these experiences that generate meaning and cause us to continue to look forward to Christmas year after year.
~Burgoyne Christmas Letter 2007