Women are the spirit of Christmas

I look around and read about what men – especially Santa Claus – are doing for the world at this time of year and I think the people doing the really important work are the fair sex – the women of the world.

I am a person of the Christian faith – not that the other religions are not as good, because all believe in the betterment of people of all colours and creeds. In my faith one of the many reasons for Christianity is Jesus Christ, but as I look and read about those times, what about his mother Mary? She was a great influence on the church.

I look around our city and country and see women being abused, threatened, and taking a secondary position in the church (my faith is Roman Catholic), although they are equals in other faiths.

So to this I say all the women I know and respect and have worked with in the East End of Toronto and have contributed more for the people than men. These ‘ladies of the light’ have given more of their time than probably any member of the opposite sex. I have seen these ‘Christmas Queens’ hard at work helping the down and out, cooking meals, helping the less fortunate – seniors, children, mentally challenged, – thanks to their personal sacrifice. I know wonderful women of all different walks of life – lawyers, educators, politicians, crossing guards, nannies, police, cooks, ministers, dog walkers, store owners, stay at home mothers, newspaper workers, librarians. These are the people who make the Beach the wonderful caring place it is. They are the fabric of the Christmas spirit. They can be counted on to help out, especially at this time of year when we try to help our fellow humans who are less fortunate than many of us.

I cannot say too much about these Christmas Queens, especially when we read about the terrible thing happening to some women at this time. I know in my heart that they are the spirit that Christmas is all about. I salute all of you.

You ladies know who I mean – we have worked together for many years. I can’t cover all of what you have done for the community – that would be like writing a bible – but I can name some of you for the wonderful work you do:

Allie Harris, Annikki Desmarias, Melinda Drake, Lois Cathy Weston, Barbara McDearmid, Constance Nobes, Criss Hajak, Jackie Robinson, Joan Knox, Debbie Visconti, Linda Ross, Lynn MacMillan, Marian Hilton, Pam Routley, Sasha Gwizd, Sophia McKay, Susan Saab, Susan Thomas, Theresa Anderson, Carol Calder, Marie Perrotta, Suzanne Beard, Mary-Margaret McMahon, Frances Lankin, Sandra Bussin, Dorothy Thomas, Nancy Culver, Marion Bryden, Eileen Tinney, Mary Campbell, Barbara Myrvold, Mary June Lenouvel, Nancy Hayes, Edna Houston, Sheila Blinoff, Yvonne Walmsley, Leslie Woo, Sheila Carey-Meagher, Susie Choi, Maria Minna, Deana James, Paris Quinn, Jean Cochrane, Angela Kennedy, Angela Miller, Lisa Rochon, Carole Stimmell, Mrs. Plummer, Lois Young, Anne Butler, Charlene Provan, Helen Lalonidas, Shirley Jones, Jennifer Cline, Mary Christie, Joan Brent, Patricia McAuliffe, Pat Silver, Tracey Harper, Lee Ann Acton.

To those Christmas Queens I have written about, please, if you can, think about all of their good deeds and sacrifices all year round, and especially at Christmas. To all the children and grandchildren, brothers, husbands, and relatives, these women are the special spirit of Christmas and all other religions in the East End and the Beach.

Merry Christmas to all, and peace on Earth.

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