EDITORIAL: Thanksgiving in the Lebanon Valley
Nov 21, 2012 (Lebanon Daily News - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
We should all find our individual reasons for thankfulness today. There can be as many of those as there are people in the Lebanon Valley, and that's good. The more, the better.
We extend our thanks today to those who work year-round to help those who are in need. We are thankful that the Lebanon Valley is filled with individuals, organizations and businesses that have a high social conscience and choose to act for the good of the people in their community.
We are thankful to those who, on days like today, choose to spend their holiday giving to others. We speak of those volunteering at community meals, churches that open their doors to the less fortunate and offer them a reason for thankfulness. We're thankful for the missions and shelters who stand ready at all times but who really step up to the plate at this time of year.
There are groups for whom we are thankful for their efforts throughout the year. We think of our volunteers, our emergency workers, the firefighters and ambulance crews who stand ready, around the clock and around the calendar, serving us in our greatest time of need, when our very lives and properties are endangered.
We thank those organizations that fight against fatal diseases, always pushing toward a cure. We honor those groups who seek as they can to assure that those in the most desperate need find that need fulfilled.
We thank our government officials at all levels (now there's a surprise, perhaps). But really, these individuals,
especially on the local level, are not serving out of any sense but to be a part of seeing their communities grow. There are behind-the-scenes efforts, a lot of work for next to no money -- in the case of school directors, there is no money, but there's massive responsibility. So we thank those willing to step forward and open themselves to the inevitable criticism and still work to do the best job they can as they see it. Today, at least, they deserve the break and the accolade.
We are thankful for our police and our military, for the veterans of the service who are such a part of our community. They serve, or they have served, and many form the rank and file of the other organizations that we mentioned above, or they have their own organizations that also have the betterment of the community in mind.
Businesses exist to be profitable, to serve as job creators and drivers of the economy. That's the material for the business page. But many businesses, especially hometown ones, quietly go about their giving as they are able to a wide variety of good causes.
Every week, perhaps several times a week, we run thank-you letters on this page from community organizations that hold events and fundraisers, again as a service to the people in the area. In all of these letters, there is a substantial list of individuals and businesses who in some way supported the event, from providing space to food to prizes to volunteers to some other form of support.
There's no economic profit in performing such services. But there is enormous profit to the community, and frankly, good will has never been known to hurt business when people turn from fundraisers to consumers.
We have always seen the great generosity of the Lebanon Valley. We have noted it among groups of various kinds, and we've extended our thank-yous to a variety of them.
But we also want to thank all of the individuals, many of whom choose to work anonymously, who in some way make the lives of people in their community better. That, in turn, makes communities better. Whether it's by serving in one of these organizations, donating time or money to them, attending events, even simply saying thanks, all of these actions make the Lebanon Valley a more special place.
We're good people. Let's take today to recognize that.
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