Saturday, December 11, 2010
Christmas in the City
On second thought, The Christmas Spirit is alive and well in the city. At least in Indianapolis. Last night daughter Lisa took us to a Christmas concert at Butler University and it was great. Great to be with a daughter who has just recovered from a bad bout of bronchitis, and great in the performance of Christmas music. Some secular, but most traditional. At the end of the concert we heard the Messiah - marvelous. But then they auctioned off directing rights to a second rendition of the Messiah and bids came from all over the audience in Clowes Hall. The final bid -the WINNING bid - came after spirited bidding and the money pledged was to go to a fund to help Butler University choral groups present music programs in Europe in the year ahead.
Not only music by college groups - some very large - but the Indianapolis Childrens Choir as well. Our granddaughter Jill sang in that choir some time ago before she went to college. What a wonderful collection of young people and even more when they sang jointly with with the Butler University Choir. It was a night to rfemember and I am grateful to Lisa for taking us.
On another side of town - close to where we live - there is Old Bethel United Methodist Church. It is where we have been attending worship and it is an amazingly warm, friendly, and caring congregation. The other picture above is of the fellowship hall yesterday afternoon. The entire hall was filled with food boxes and christmas packages for the needy at Christmas. Over 300 families are being given gifts of Christmas. I thought to myself, Christmas is a gift of God, and what better way to share the love of Christ with people in need, especially in times like now with so many people suffering unemployment. I'm sure there are many other churches and benevolent organizations that share love at Christmas with care packages and gifts for children, but in all my years I have never seen such an expression of what Christmas is all about without expection of some kind of return.
But there IS a return - it's the knowledge that people who might not have much will be able to eat turkey, and fruit and basic foods. It is the knowledge of smiles from children who might not have anything to celebrate. So, if my last blog focused too much on a secular season, we should be reminded that the true spirit of Christmas is more alive than we might think. Not just in little country churches - but in the city as well. Thank you, Indianapolis, for reminding me.