My deepest thoughts, prayers and sympathies go the friends, families and communities of the typhoon-ravaged Philippines. My soul cannot fathom the heart wrenching fatalities, delays in supplies of food, water and medical supplies.
I pray that in the aftermath of this catastrophic natural disaster that through the collective act of global human compassion and empathy that needed resources will be effectively mobilized to provide help.
Range maintenance accident to blame. This is where my close family member C. is right now. We have no reason to believe that he was injured, but as my daughter said “it’s pretty freaky to wake up and read an article about 4 marine trainees being killed during the same training phase, at the same place your kid is…with no communication. If you are the praying kind of folk, please keep C. in your prayers during his enlistment and the families of the Marines that died.”
It is with gratitude that I THANK all of YOU who serve and sacrifice so that I may be free–yesterday, today, and tomorrow…
It is also with gratitude that I call attention to National Philanthropy Day. The Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) “acknowledges the entire spectrum of services provided by the nonprofit community and recognizes the profound impact that philanthropy has on the fabric of society.”
I am so humbled to see the good work that so many people are doing by sharing their time, talent and treasure in my community and around our world, including the Philippines.
AFP and community friends gathered at the Log Cabin on Wednesday to honor people who care enough to make our world a better place, and work to make it a reality.
They are a group of altruistic leaders and a pattern appeared as they each accepted an award from AFP for their contributions to the greater good. Each leader from the youngest to the most seasoned awardees deflected credit from self, and gave credit to their team. “No person owns all the ideas; no one person can make all ideas work…it takes a team, like the Boston Red Sox…” ~G.T.
Several of these local leaders noted that they were influenced by a mentor, coach or someone in their life that inspired them.
The kindness of a stranger.
After the AFP luncheon I recalled a story of someone who profoundly inspired me. Years ago I took my 10-year-old son to a Falcons hockey game. A gentleman approached us and started a conversation with my son. As a mom, I was on red alert of stranger danger.
Yet somehow, the demeanor of this man calmed my soul, just a bit. I listened, observed and learned.
This man asked my son if he liked hockey. “You bet”, S. replied with a grin. The gentleman said, “I like to give what I have away”, and asked my permission to give S. the shiny coin he was holding in his hand-a gold dollar. I responded and let the stranger know that I always taught my children not to accept a gift from a stranger, but thank you for your kindness. He smiled and nodded his head in unsaid agreement.
Then the stranger and S. engaged in a two-way conversation about how cool hockey and Ameila Park are. The stranger introduced himself as Albert Ferst. “I named Ameila Park in honor of my late wife, Ameila.” “We shared a belief in creating a place for kids like you to spend time with friends and just have fun.” As a humbly embarrassed mom, in an instant I recognized this community leader, and allowed him to give S. that shiny gold coin.
That act of random kindness was a life changing moment that taught S. and I the altruistic meaning of time, talent and treasure!
I was in the presence of someone who dedicated his life to revitalizing his community and making life better for others. A true change agent! To think my first instinct was stranger danger, we could have missed an important lesson in human compassion if I did not calmly listen and learn from this man.
“Giving of any kind… taking an action… begins the process of change, and moves us to remember that we are part of a much greater universe. ” ~ Mbali Creazzo
These two photos are from an ornate hand carved piece of furniture was made by a family friend from the Philippines.