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This is my Christmas column
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There is no way I can send Christmas cards to all the wonderful people who expressed concern for me during my recent "confinement" through cards, calls, flowers, food, visits and prayers. So please accept this as my personal greeting to you. It is also a greeting to those whom I don't even know.

I sincerely wish for you the happiest of holidays, many blessings and a wonderful upcoming new year.

I am happy to be able to get around, albeit on a walker, in my own home and even to a few places on the outside. I am grateful to have my house cleaned of the mold and mildew that had begun to build during the humid spring and summer when the house was closed and to have a great lady to come in almost every day to do the dozens of chores that I can no longer manage. And I continue to appreciate all that family and friends do for me.

At my church and all others, there are Christmas sermons, programs, projects and messages of goodwill in many forms. Most of them remind us that we celebrate a Savior who also shows us a better way to live. Even people who do not claim to be Christian are touched with the Christmas Spirit. And so am I.

I have been very impressed with messages from Pope Francis, particularly as he moves from theology into commentary on economic and social issues.

Obviously, I am not alone; TIME magazine chose him as "Person of the Year."

It is noteworthy, too, that he fits the admonition to "walk the walk, not just talk the talk."

About the time when we almost abandoned Thanksgiving in favor of searching for bargains (another major part of our Christmas celebration) Pope Francis launched an attack on growing income inequality.

At any age and in my physical condition, I am acutely aware that looking too far in the future is somewhat precarious. But if I want to add a "Happy New Year" to my "Merry Christmas," I would echo the Pope's concern for the less fortunate, not just with charity at Christmas, but as a permanent attitude.