Editorial: Be a good king

Good King Wenceslas look’d out, On the Feast of Stephen When the snow lay round about, Deep, and crisp, and even Brightly shone the moon that night, Though the frost was cruel, When a poor man came in sight, Gathering winter fuel.

As the Christmas season winds down, many are feeling even more the deep cuts of the recession and many are recovering from the serious weather impacts we suffered this year.

While those who used to do a lot of the giving are finding themselves still without work or with reduced pay compared to a few years ago, more of our area’s needy have even less.

Saint Wenceslaus I, Duke of Behemia in the 10th Century, for whom the “Good King Wenceslas” carol is based, is a timely reminder each year that giving of yourself and sharing your wealth — large or small — is what can make the days, months and year following Christmas better for you and someone else.

For this carol, and its message, is special in that is doesn’t mention Christmas and it actually takes place after Christmas — on Dec. 26, which is when the Feast of Stephen is celebrated.

Because giving isn’t just about Christmas time, but this is a time when that need is increased – even if just our awareness of it.

The devastating hurricane this fall has left more in grave need than usual this time of year. Many in town and surrounding areas are still without homes and many in the tri-state area are still without basic necessities. Working locally with The Community Fund of Darien, Person-to-Person, the town’s social services department can offer giving opportunities for our families.

You could take your family to deliver winter coats, food, or other canned goods, making a difference for some of the region’s neediest residents while teaching your children a valuable lesson about the importance of helping those less fortunate. While writing a check in support of a worthy cause is important, taking the time to help those in need with your own time and talents can be much more meaningful.

Like “Good King Wenceslas,” who summoned his page to help him gather food, drink and firewood that they brought to a poor man “through the rude winds’ wild lament, and the bitter weather” rather than staying at that holiday feast, you’ll be rewarded.

Therefore, Christian men, be sure, Wealth or rank possessing, Ye who now will bless the poor, Shall yourselves find blessing.

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