Sharing Our Blessings

December 22, 1991

The approaching Christmas and New Year's holidays are a time of reflection. We tend to leaf through our memory books, recalling old friendships and joyous celebrations of the past. Looking at the wide-eyed tots experiencing their first holiday surprises, we think about the marvel of life's renewal, its hopes and disappointments.

As Marylanders count their blessings this holiday season, many are in a generous mood. Not only are they remembering friends with gifts but also total strangers. This is only fitting. The story of the very first Christmas, after all, tells us about a needy couple with a newborn child who had no place to turn but to a humble stable.

Countless Marylanders will be in need of help after the holidays, too. For that reason we urge our readers to support such FTC year-round charitable efforts as the United Way of Central Maryland, which is in the midst of its annual fund-raising campaign. More than 913,000 people -- one in three families in Central Maryland -- use United Way services annually. Funds raised from the campaign will go to support programs that address homelessness, hunger, child day-care, illiteracy, substance abuse, domestic violence, child abuse and assistance for the elderly and disabled.

Many other charities do equally important work. Organizations like the Salvation Army and the Volunteers of America bring professional expertise to social services that governments, because of budget crunches, are now forsaking.

It's winter in America and the needs are great. As each of us counts our blessings and mulls over resolutions for the coming year, it is important to remember the growing and continuing demand for charitable service. Donations of money and materials are always needed but volunteer time is equally important. Throughout the year.

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