Doug's 2014 Christmas Greeting

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year“No one is useless in this world who lightens the burdens of another.”
                ― Charles Dickens
A classic Christmas favourite, "The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire)", written in 1944 and recorded by countless artists over the years continues to resound the magic and wonderment of the season.  It reminds us of the joy and excitement of the young and the young-at-heart through its lyrics, "Tiny tots with their eyes all aglow, will find it hard to sleep tonight. They know that Santa's on his way."  From tiny tots they grow and through those precious years we teach them the real meaning of Christmas and the importance of giving!

In so much as how well carols and tradition speak to the happiness of giving, such elation can be felt all year round through acts of kindness and love towards each other.  When those within our family and circles, or our community, and even our world pass away, we celebrate their lives and learn of the wonderful impact each has had upon us - individually and as a community.  I have always admired those whose countless and selfless acts of charity and volition have endeavoured to make our world a better place and who have had such a favourable impact that they would be so dearly missed.

Often when we honour and celebrate the lives of such individuals, we are amazed to hear of the unending deeds of good will and of sacrifice because these ‘heros’ were never known for their grandiloquence.  Often unsung, they quietly and sometimes secretly go about without pageantry and fanfare.

Rotary International was born out of Chicago in February of 1905 through the vision of an attorney, Paul P. Harris forming one of the world’s first service organizations, the Rotary Club of Chicago.  He said, “Whatever Rotary may mean to us, to the world it will be known by the results it achieves.”  Rotary's motto is "Service Above Self", but it also operates on the premise, "One profits most who serves best"

Ralph Waldo Emerson, touched on the same idea in his poem, 'Success', writing, "To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived; This is to have succeeded."

Inspired by those who have truly made a difference, who were so tirelessly dedicated, I am proud and privileged to have known in my family and circles such heros.  Their legacy presents precious and incalculable lessons of the heart and soul - the responsibility, encumbrance and gracefulness of giving and comforting.

Not everyone can move every mountain.  Mother Teresa, who often spoke of love and caring beget an international movement but was so humble in her sense of proportion.  She said, these two things, "If you can't feed a hundred people, then feed just one." and "Love begins by taking care of the closest ones - the ones at home."

So for this Christmas of 2014, our wish for you and yours is twofold!  First, we hope that you will be blessed with such heros in your life, and secondly that you will experience the warmth and fulfilment of giving and sharing all year round, truly making a difference to one, or, one hundred and one.  May we all embrace the spirit of Christmas, feeling its peace and love all year through!

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year in 2015!
Doug & Josey McCann