In Lancaster, PA, volunteers from the Church World Service, an international non-profit service that takes in Syrian refugees, go shopping and provide newly arrived refugee families with a home, food, furniture, clothing, toys for children, basic kitchen supplies, and then a job.
In this NY Times story, volunteers shop at Walmart to supply a family with last minute necessities. Another volunteer drops off a full dinner for a family of refugees so that when they come to their new home, they will have a home cooked meal waiting. Pajamas and soccer balls sit on twin beds in childrens rooms covered with local sports teams blankets and sheets. A sign in Arabic says "welcome home".
This is what is means to be an American. A country of immigrants who understand what it means to be a stranger in a strange land. For unless you are a native american, all of us are children of immigrants.
This is what the meaning of Christmas is. To help a neighbor, a brother, a sister, people you don't know, united only by the belief we all share this small blue planet, we all breathe the same air, we all want peace and health and happiness for our family and opportunities for our children.
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
Happy Christmas (which is the proper greeting in our England)
and Happy Hannukah.