Christmas Eve 2017

From 2016.  But this year of 2017, my annual tradition has even more meaning than before.  My son is now 18 years old, and my daughter 22 and newly graduated from college, and the turmoils of the world make me fear for them both.  Please read all the way through for my personal message from last year.

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As always, Around the Grid upholds its Christmas Eve tradition — here is Bing Crosby and David Bowie from 1977, performing their famous duet, “The Little Drummer Boy / Peace on Earth.”  This was the last Christmas special Bing did before his death.

Almost every time I write an article in these pages, I use my “signature” graphic, which bids you all peace.  It has several meanings for me:  the earthly dream, sung of by two wonderful musicians above, and the more lasting, eternal peace we greet each other with in the Episcopal Church (as well as other liturgical churches).  Peace on earth has been a dream for my generation — those of us who still remember our dreams of that time — since our youth in the Sixties and Seventies, and sought by people of goodwill around the world for hundreds of generations.

Nearly forty years after these singers, now both sadly dead, performed this song — which has become a holiday classic in its own right — the world still reels on through conflict and hatred, and the dream of peace among all peoples seems elusive, more of a pipe dream than a reality.  But I have to believe that there is still hope for peace — both the kind we think of, between each other, and the sharing of the true peace of God, “which passes all understanding,” no matter how each of us perceives God in our minds and faiths.  Perhaps, on the day we achieve earthly peace, the peace of the Earthly Paradise will be made at last apparent to us all, and that other serenity become the true inheritance of us all ….

Every child must be made aware
Every child must be made to care
Care enough for his fellow man
To give all the love that he can

May you and yours have a merry, meaningful and — most of all — hopeful Christmas season.

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