Michael Bublé – I’ll Be Home For Christmas

If you’ve ever spent the holidays away from family and friends, this song likely holds special meaning for you, as it does for me. It’s been a holiday classic since 1943, when it was written by Kim Gannon and Walter Kent to honor soldiers who couldn’t return home. I’ve been lucky to spend most years at home for the holidays, but there have been a few occasions where it just wasn’t possible. On those times, I’ve learned that location was less important than people…it was who I was with, not where I was, that made it special. Home is where your heart is, right?

In the past few weeks, I’ve attended holiday themed events for our youth, visited the North Pole (a.k.a., the Vista Boutique) and listened to festive concerts. We go out of our way at Vista Maria to make each youth feel valued and loved at the holidays, and I am so happy to see the efforts and the spirit of our generous foundress, Sr. Mary Euphrasia, in all of us! However, for some of our young people we really can’t give what is at the top of the list: to be home, with their families.

So, what to do when you can’t give what is most wanted? It’s simple, really. Be the person you’d like to spend time with if your loved ones weren’t available. One of my most memorable Christmases was in 1979, when my mother had emergency surgery and one of her colleagues came to care for us so my dad and grandparents could be at her bedside. We missed our family, of course- but this person did everything she could to have fun with us and celebrate despite the circumstances.

I look back at that time now, and I’m so grateful for her calm and positive presence. It made an otherwise scary and sad time bearable. Whether you realize it or not, every time you do something to help young people and families, you are doing the same thing.

Thank you for all you do for Vista Maria’s mission, especially now when there is so much hustle and bustle. Whatever holiday you celebrate- Christmas, Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, or another- I sincerely hope that you can spend this time with people you love, and that your heart is full. Wishing you all the joy and peace of the season!

Happy Holidays to you and yours,