"I will light Candles this Christmas;
Candles of joy despite all sadness,
Candles of hope where despair keeps watch,
Candles of courage for fears ever present,
Candles of peace for tempest-tossed days,
Candles of grace to ease heavy burdens,
Candles of love to inspire all my living,
Candles that will burn all the year long."
Howard Thurman, The Mood of Christmas , 1973
As Disciples of Christ, our giving through Week of Compassion lights candles that burn all year long. Each day we look for ways to light candles where disasters stir up deep sadness and loss. We revive the flame of hope through work with our partners to provide ways for others to feed their families and care for their communities through sustainable development projects. We watch as candles of courage burn brighter when women are empowered to find their voices and share their gifts through grants from the Women’s Empowerment Fund. Candles of peace glow as we work alongside those who find their lives uprooted by war and violence. We accompany refugees and the fire of grace increases to ease the burdens of long journeys.
Thank you, Disciples, for lighting candles of God's compassion in 2014 which included bringing relief to West Africa in the midst of the Ebola outbreak, to many parts of the United States after major storms and to Iraq and Syria where many continue to be internally displaced by conflict.
As the days grow shorter and the night lingers longer, let us search for where the light of God’s love will shine through human flesh. While we anticipate the birth of a little one born in Bethlehem, let us pray that the light of God’s courage will bring us alive with kindness. When the Christmas visitors disappear and a star dims, let us blow on the Christmas embers and fan into flame the light of compassion within us for the new year.
Christmas Blessings to you all…all year long!
Vy Nguyen, Executive Director
Dawn Barnes, Transitional Program Associate
Mary Jacobs, Interim Resource Development Director
This Week's Responses:
Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance
California, Flood Relief
Malawi, Drought Relief
Ukraine, Refugee Assistance
Development and Long-Term Recovery and Rehabilitation
Nicaragua, Inclusive Education
Guatemala, Community Development