By: Mark Kleinschmidt
Did you know that the renowned poem, “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas” by Clement Moore used to be an annual Christmas Eve feature in newspapers across the country. We are going to keep the tradition going, but use a different story, it’s called Wendi’s Christmas Cookies. In 2018 our community experienced a great tragedy when a crazed gunman shot and killed five reporters. This rocked the very foundation of the community but when Christmas Day rolled around the folks at the Capital Gazette published a truly moving editorial that included a wonderful description about the meaning of Christmas.
“Every year, Wendi Winters (a reporter at the Capital Gazette) would buy 400 Oreos, dip them in chocolate, drizzle them with white chocolate and sprinkle them with crushed candy canes. She’d hand them out at the office, to a bunch of journalists old and young who thought they were far too cynical to appreciate a simple human gesture.
As often happens in life, lessons usually are appreciated too late to thank the person who’s given you a particular morsel of wisdom. Because what Wendi was doing was far more than making tooth-achingly sweet cookies.
What she gave each of us was the generosity of her spirit and an opportunity for starting anew. If only we’d been smart enough to grasp it.
That’s the idea of Christmas. The holiday represents the birth of a man who offers the gift of another chance in exchange for faith — or, if you prefer, the promise of new life as the days begin to slowly, gradually lengthen again.
By making these cookies, Wendi told us that no matter how flawed we are, she treasured our friendship. She enjoyed our companionship and our shared work: seeking truth and justice.
So on Christmas Day, as you celebrate with your families or just go about your business because it’s just Saturday to you, we ask you to consider the lesson of Wendi’s cookies.
It’s never too late to appreciate the gifts a friend gives you, even if they can’t hear your heartfelt thanks. It’s never too late to look for new beginnings.”
Take some time this Christmas to really enjoy the meaning of a special cookie made a friend or family member and experience the real meaning of Christmas.
Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!