Angels are big these days - and not just because of the Christmas season.
They are the topic of conversations, books are written about them, and television programs and movies are produced about the miracles angels perform.
Some find it comforting to think an angel hovers above their shoulders, wings fluttering, keeping a watchful eye out to redirect a misguided step or stop a misadventure from happening.
What might be even more rewarding, however, is to be an angel for someone else.
That’s what givers to The Spokesman-Review Christmas Fund are - angels who help provide a cheerier Christmas to low-income families, especially to the children.
Already, during its first few official hours of the 1995 drive, $1,704.61 in angelic gifts have arrived.
Some are from those who foresaw the need and mailed a check even before they bought their Thanksgiving turkey.
Judy Laddon and Larry Shook, 4327 S. Perry, sent $100 with a note: “We’re anticipating the beautiful service you provide over the holidays to ensure the people of Spokane have a lovely celebration. We’d like to contribute.”
The day’s total also includes money received after the books for the 1995 Christmas Fund closed; the money was put in the bank to be included in this year’s fund.
Leisure Entertainment Corp. of New York and Ontario mailed a check last January for $1,000, giving an enormous boost to the fund’s early, lean days this year.
Likewise, in March, Pegasus Gold Corp. 601 W. First, sent a check for $340, matching a gift made last year by John F. Childs.
Laurie J. Hopkins, Pegasus matching gift coordinator, wrote: “We are pleased that our employees are actively participating in a program such as this and are equally pleased to offer our support.”
Nintendo of America Inc., Redmond, Wash., also sent $100 to match last year’s gift from Carol Boisjolie. They wrote: “Nintendo is happy to be able to play a small part in your organization’s endeavor and wishes you every future success.”
A $100 anonymous gift from San Antonio, Texas, was received in memory of Gertrude Petek, “a great lady.”
Richard Everett, a Spokesman-Review employee, had a company refund of $48.47 coming his way, which he requested go to the Christmas Fund; Cal McDermid, another newspaper employee, also donated his refund of $8.14, and, Joyce Johnson, 1600 W. Pacific, gave $8.
Gifts of all sizes are needed to make the Christmas Fund what it is - a reflection of the city’s profile. It takes each of us to make Spokane and the Inland Northwest the community where people choose to live.
It takes wealthy corporations lowering their three-piece business-suit veneer and making it their business to help ease the sad business of Christmas for the poor.
It takes members of groups and organizations pooling their money to support a cause that can stretch those dollars so much further than if they were used alone. Because the Christmas Bureau buys huge amounts of toys in quantity and at wholesale prices, a few dollars does the work of many more.
It takes individuals contributing to the Christmas Fund in memory of loved ones to bring a human touch to the gifts. What could be more comforting than to realize a memorial gift made in the name of one’s partner, parent or grandparent will make a child’s Christmas a fun day instead of a sad day?
It takes little kids shaking pennies out of their piggy banks for other little kids to make the Christmas Fund the poignant present it is.
One appreciative aspect of giving to the Christmas Fund is realizing that every bit of your gift goes to the fund and nothing else. There are no overhead expenses - no salaries to pay, no rent to fork over. Nothing.
The money is collected by the newspaper and given to the three non-profit agencies that operate the Christmas Bureau: Catholic Charities, the Salvation Army and the Volunteers of America.
The money pays for food vouchers to help low-income families place a more festive holiday meal on the table than they could otherwise afford. And, it buys a gift for every child in the family, up to 18 years old.
If it’s possible for you, your business or your organization to be an angel this year, please write a check to The Spokesman-Review (S-R) Christmas Fund, P.O. Box 516, Spokane, Wash. 99210; or bring your gift to the editorial offices on the fourth floor of The Spokesman-Review Tower, 999 W. Riverside.
And, don’t be alarmed if you happen to hear a fluttering sound by your ear.