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Yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus
by Francis P. Church, Published in The New York Sun on September 21, 1897


Dear Editor:

      I am 8 years old. Some of my friends say there is no Santa Claus. Papa says "If you see it in The Sun it's so."

Please tell me the truth; is there a Santa Claus?

Virginia O'Hanlon


Virginia,

     Your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men's or children's are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.

     Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus! It would be as dreary as if there were no Virginias. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.

     Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies! You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas Eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if they did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see.

      No Santa Claus! Thank God, he lives, and he lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.

The New York Sun
September 21, 1897


Mankind was my business.
Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol

As Scrooge's nephew said when his uncle formerly dismissed Christmas and its joyous significance with the words, Bah! Humbug!:

I have always thought of Christmas time, when it has come around apart from the veneration due to its sacred name and origin, if anything belonging to it can be apart from that -- as a good time; a kind, forgiving, charitable, pleasant time; the only time I know of the long calendar of the year, when men and women seem by one consent to open their shut-up hearts freely, and to think of people . . . as if they were fellow-passengers. . . .

One of the most moving statements in this Christmas tale is by Marley's Ghost when despairing over "life's opportunities misused." Scrooge, trembling with fear and beginning to share in Marley's guilt, says: "But you were always a good man of business, Jacob." Upon which the Ghost cried out in anguish:

Business! Mankind was my business. The common welfare was my business; charity, mercy, forbearance, and benevolence, were all my business. The dealings of my trade were but a drop of water in the comprehensive ocean of my business!

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For over 60 years helping our neighbors in need.[Info]
Please send your generous contributions to: Pat Boer, Treasurer, 307 Roosevelt Ave. HH

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Donate $10 for the Center For Food Action
... and get a Beautiful Red Ribbon on  "The Boulevard" with your name on it!

Your $10 contribution will be used by the Center For Food Action to purchase food. The Center For Food Action is a non-profit food center that has served our area's needy.  Center for Food Action welcomes basic non-perishable food items such as juice, cereal, canned goods, pasta, baby food, etc.   Food items should not be open, expired or in glass jars.

For more information go to www.buy-a-ribbon.com

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The Night Before Christmas
Clement C. Moore

Twas the night before Christmas, when all though the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The stockings were hung b y the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;
The children were nestled all snug in there beds,
While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads;
And Mamma in her kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled our brains for a long winter's nap,

When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from my bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.

The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow,
Gave lustre of midday to objects below;
When what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature sleigh and eight tiny reindeer,
With a little old driver, so lively and quick
I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.

More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled and shouted and called them by name:

"Now, Dasher! now, Dancer! Now, Prancer and Vixen! 
on, comet! on Cupid! on, Donder and Blitzen!
To the top of the porch, to the top of the wall!
Now, dash away, dash away, dash away all!"

As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When thy meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky.
So, up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
With a sleigh full of toys, ----and St. Nicholas too.
And then in a twinkling I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.

As I drew in my head and was turning around,
Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.
He was dressed all in fur from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot;
A bundle of toys he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.

His eyes how they twinkled!  His dimples how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry;
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the beard on his chin was as white as the snow.
The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled his head like  wreath.

He had a broad face, and a little round belly
That shook when he laughed, like a bowl full of jelly.
He was chubby and plump -- a right jolly old elf --
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself.
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread.

He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the stockings: then turned with a jerk,
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose.

He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle;
But I heard his exclaim, ere he drove out of sight:

"Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night!"


Color copies are available at Minuteman Press (Boulevard & Franklin).

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