Christmas magic

In one of her recent posts, LouAnn who writes On the Homefront, asked a pertinent question.

So what proof do you have of the magic of Christmas? What is your “kernel” of Christmas magic?  

My mind immediately went back to one of my most poignant Christmas memories. Ten years ago, it captured the imagination of Laura Eggertson, now a self-employed writer, editor and freelance journalist who was, at that time, writing for Homemaker’s magazine. Here’s the introduction to her December 2002 Special Feature entitle Christmas Kindness.

“The knock on the door came late on Christmas Eve, as Elaine and Richard DeBock were putting their children to bed. The family had just returned from a service at their church in Sedgewick, Alta., a small town southeast of Edmonton.

The DeBocks’ four-year-old daughter, Janina, was home from hospital after an eight-week stay. She was dying of leukemia. Though Elaine still had hope, she knew this would likely be Janina’s last Christmas. As she tried to make it a joyous occasion, she also battled her sorrow.

When she opened the door, the bearded figure on the front stoop was one the children were expecting – though a complete surprise to the DeBocks. There stood Santa Claus and, without a word, he nodded to the adults and strode in, gifts in hand for Janina and her two-year-old brother. Barely stopping to register the children’s wide-eyed delight, he waved a mitten-clad hand and was gone.

“To this day, 20 years later, we have no idea who the kind stranger was who helped make our little girl’s last Christmas a magical one,” says DeBock, a teacher who still lives in Sedgewick. “I believe in Santa Claus.”

The anonymous Santa gave the DeBocks a Christmas they will never forget. Though the circumstances were exceptional, the gesture was born of a more ordinary gift: simple kindness.”

We’re approaching our 30th Christmas since the one described above. Many people helped lighten our load during those dark days but none was quite as magical as the anonymous Santa. Such a simple act of kindness, yet we were blessed so profoundly.

I often thought that if I learned the identity of the unknown Santa, the magic might be lost but not so.  The mystery was solved just a few years ago when his mother, back in town to play in our annual ladies golf tournament, happened to mention the incident to me. He was just a young man with a big heart. Like the rest of our small community, he knew what we were going through and wanted to help.

Maybe that’s the magic of Christmas… reaching out in love to help someone in need. After all, isn’t that what the babe in the manger was all about?

“I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”  

John 10:10



10 thoughts on “Christmas magic

  1. Dear Elaine and Richard, what a wonderful story around what must have been the saddest time of your lives. You are so brave to tell the story but as Kublor-Ross stated the more you talk of deaths the easier life becomes and you will give this message to many. Thanks for sharing. Darlene

  2. Christmas! I’m the last of 15 kids and even though we were “poor” Christmas was always a special time of year for us. And stories like that reminds me of the true magic of Christmas. Sine I’ll be away a lot this season I’ll be re-blogging my favorite Christmas memories. I’d love to have you pop by and say hello if you have time.

    • Hello Doug and welcome to my blog! I hope you continue to enjoy it. I’ve just been checking yours and I’m sure I’ll be back again as healthy living is a passion of mine.

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