Celebrating the Holiday Season In 2020

After a challenging year, finding small ways to bring joy and hope into our lives is crucial.

Ira Lichi/ Shutterstock
Ira Lichi/ Shutterstock

It is Christmas 2020. Wishing all my readers and friends a Merry Christmas and wishing our planet Earth a more effective way to deal with the climate issues.  It has been a challenging time for all, but especially parents who have to act as teachers while trying to work, and for people who have lost their jobs, their homes, and family members. Watching the food lines on TV,  it is hard to believe that this is America.

Perhaps this Christmas we can all focus on the meaning of Christmas, no matter what our religion is. If we forget our labels and how they are “different” or “better” than another group, we can all focus on the meaning of Christmas which is hope. All religions in the world focus on hope and peace. People who feel hopeful, usually calm down and have an air of tranquility about them.  They tend to take everything in stride.  When we calm down, we can think more clearly and make intelligent choices and work to improve our situation.

My hope for our country is to solve this crisis by offering more support and for us to return to a normal life. I am thinking about the parents who are probably the most stressed group. Their stress not only impacts them, it impacts their kids.  It is a vicious cycle that is hard to control. We all want to trust and hope because that brings a sense of peace and calm that soon everything will be better and it will because of two things: the vaccine and a new administration.

Religion is meant to comfort us in times of stress, but most are not religious these days. One thing we can do is work together with our community. Collaborate with neighbors and friends. We can all hope that we won’t have huge food lines, that employment will return to pre-covid levels, and that schools and businesses will reopen. And, of course, we hope that the pandemic will abate thanks to the vaccine.

We can all join a great new project focusing on Hope for the whole world called the Moonshot Project out of Penn State. It is from the brand-new Penn State Readiness Institute that wants to collect our hopes and dreams — and send them to the moon. Literally. The Readiness Institute is using Pittsburgh-based spacecraft company Astrobotic to launch the Hope Moonshot. Everyone is invited to write down their hopes, and submit them through an online form before Jan. 22. The messages of hope will be saved on an SD card and placed in a storage capsule and sent to the moon aboard Astrobotic’s Peregrine lander in 2021. This project is a collaboration with a California nonprofit called Global Moonshots in Education.  Everyone can join in. It’s free.

Whether through your community, a moonshot, or just a simple activity at home there are sources of hope present around us. Today is the perfect day for hope. Watch a special movie as a family, re-gift things you are not using, go outside in nature, or tell your loved ones you love them with a card or via video chat.

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