I just read Silent Night by Stanley Weintraub. He tells the story of the magic of a Christmas Eve during World War One when enemies stopped killing each other and met in No Man's Land to exchange gifts of tobacco and puddings and shared photos of wives and children.

This was surreal strength of movement of the ground troops who turned their backs on orders and stood up to celebrate Christmas Eve, lighting Christmas trees with candles, and expressing goodwill towards man.

We've had our own miracle happening here at the Peter Moore and Flags Unlimited building at 364 St Vincent St.

First there's eight year old William Parry who goes door to door collecting money (and toys) for Christmas Cheer. He just marched into our office at Christmas Cheer Central and gave us an ice cream bucket with $420 in it. This is the fourth year in a row that William has done something significant for Christmas Cheer.

And then there were Avery and Lauren Mogridge. The twin girls were celebrating their 7th birthday. They brought every single birthday gift they received in to Christmas Cheer and donated it for other 7 year olds.

Where does all this goodness come from?

For those of us at Christmas Cheer as we prepare hampers and toy bags for 4,800 people, we see goodness take many forms.
The woman who was just laid off her job and still brought in $50 for those less fortunate.
The donor who came back a second time to give even more money when she heard on the radio that we were far from our goal.
The deejays and newscasters from all over the city who respond so quickly when we ask for more... more diapers, more gifts for 8 year old boys, more baby things.
The tireless Christmas Cheer workers who show up day after day to coordinate food, or gifts or turkeys.
The remarkable team at Georgian College who buy and assemble so many trikes and then ship them over to us.
The harried president (Hank) who has to think on his feet and make split-second decisions that are inclusive.
The patient, caring woman who takes every phone call and fields it with care.

It goes on and on, this goodness, and it starts right here. It's men and women and children with the capacity to look around and see a need greater than their own and then act on that need.

This is Christmas Cheer Barrie and area's 32nd year of making sure that everyone has a Christmas. This year the need is overwhelming... 1,825 families, 1,594 kids, 1,004 teens, 4,800 people in total.
This year the response is equally overwhelming.

I feel so proud of this entire community. Why? Because everyone deserves to have a Christmas!

Merry Christmas!

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