Forget Boxing Day Sales! Let’s emulate Good King Wenceslas, and get back to the true origins of Boxing Day.
[T]he country gentleman stood of old, at his own gate […], and superintended the distribution of alms to the aged and the destitute. The hall, prepared for the festival of himself and his friends, was previously opened to his tenants and retainers; and the good things of the season were freely dispensed to all.
– Thomas K. Hervey, The Book of Christmas, 1888
We could not believe what we saw first thing yesterday morning!
It’s hard to believe that we were riding our bikes just one day before when it was in 6C and there was no sign at all of snow anywhere. No more biking for us for a while! Walking might be tricky right now too.
We are being restricted to our homes and are told only to be in the same place as our immediate families. Even so, we had a lovely time – just the two of us – with a few brief breaks to wave to neighbours as we shovelled our walks, or video chatted with far-away family.
Hard times. The snow and the cold make them harder. It makes me think of us complain that the butter was hard and Grandpa’s favourite reply: “It’s harder where there is none.”
As we in enter into lockdown, eating leftovers, and perhaps feeling a little sorry for ourselves because of the lockdown, let us remember those who have nowhere to go in the cold.
They are cold. They are hungry.
It is indeed harder where there is none.
Feeding and Clothing Everyone
To say the least, this past year has been trying. So many of us are staying home; we cannot go to work because of pandemic restrictions.
But imagine how it must be for those who are living on or close to the edge. In fact, you might think that you are living on or close to the edge….
But we’ve been thinking about how much money we have NOT spent on travelling to and from work or going to restaurants, concerts, or plays. We realized that we can surely spare some of what we haven’t spent on those who are less fortunate.
There are many reputable aid agencies working to help feed the chronically hungry worldwide. Here are just a few of them to help you to help others. Please look in your community for others.
- Plan Canada
:: Gifts of Hope
:: Because I’m a Girl
- World Vision
:: MCC: helping to “meet people’s immediate needs for survival during times of crisis” and
strengthen people’s long-term access to food and water, health care and education”.
- WFP United Nations World Food Program
:: Preventing Hunger
:: School Feeding
:: Food Assistance for Assets
- Agencies working within Canada
:: Daily Bread Foodbank
:: Second Harvest
:: Feed Ontario
::Canadian Association of Food Banks
Good King Wenceslas looked out
On the Feast of Stephen
When the snow lay round about
Deep and crisp and even
Brightly shone the moon that night
Though the frost was cruel
When a poor man came in sight
Gathering winter fuel
Hither, page, and stand by me,
If thou knowst it, telling
Yonder peasant, who is he?
Where and what his dwelling?
Sire, he lives a good league hence,
Underneath the mountain
Right against the forest fence
By Saint Agnes fountain.
Bring me flesh and bring me wine
Bring me pine logs hither
Thou and I shall see him dine
When we bear them thither.
Page and monarch, forth they went
Forth they went together
Through the rude winds wild lament
And the bitter weather
Sire, the night is darker now
And the wind blows stronger
Fails my heart, I know not how
I can go no longer.
Mark my footsteps, good my page
Tread thou in them boldly
Thou shall find the winters rage
Freeze thy blood less coldly.
In his master’s step he trod
Where the snow lay dinted
Heat was in the very sod
Which the Saint had printed
Therefore, Christian men, be sure
Wealth or rank possessing
Ye, who now will bless the poor
Shall yourselves find blessing.
– John Mason Neale (1818-1866), Good King Wenceslas | For St. Stephen’s Day, c.1853
(If you have something to add or say about stopping world hunger, please remember to post your thoughts and ideas on your blog, facebook, at work, etc. etc.)
:: Merry Christmastide to all!
:: Christmas Bounty
:: The Season of Giving and Receiving
:: Merry Boxing Day All!!
:: Yay!! It’s Boxing Day!
:: What are your plans for Boxing Day?
:: Wordless: Giving and receiving…
:: Happy Boxing Day!