For those of you who were in attendance last night at our Holiday Party, I sincerely hope you enjoyed yourself! The weather was just right, the food and festivities were "spot on", and this particular gathering of our amazing and diverse Community was a true delight. Thanks to the hard work of so many, most notably Mrs. Gallardo, Mrs. Cartaya, Mr. Beguiristain, and countless parent volunteers, our "Bows and Bowties" event was a resounding success and a most joyous occasion.
For the record, well over 400 members of our Community, representing Faculty/Staff, Alumni, Parents, Grandparents, Board Members, and Friends were in attendance last night, and it was a perfect way to kick off the holiday season. And while I must admit that I am moving a bit slowly today, I am feeling quite proud of our "spirit", and am holding a deep sense of gratitude for each of you, and our Palmer Trinity Community.
Last night's event itself was a perfect way to "rev up" the holiday spirit, but I must also confess that throughout the entire evening I had a sincere case of feeling a bit overwhelmed, particularly in terms of just how grateful I am to live, work, and play in such a Community as ours. For much of the night, I felt a bit as maybe George Bailey (played by Jimmy Stewart in the classic Frank Capra movie, It's a Wonderful Life) felt in that final, dramatic scene in which the town of Bedford Falls is gathered in the living room of the Baileys. For those of you who recall the movie, and know the scene, George has returned to his family, having been given the glimpse of what life might be like had he not lived. In that final powerful scene, George's brother has made it home from the War safely and soundly, the entire town has gathered funds to help keep George out of jail, and his guardian angel, Clarence has left him surrounded by friends, family, and townspeople. Each of the faces George sees gives him a moment to pause and recognize the power of the Community, and just how important each of those members of the Community is. Each of the individuals George sees holds a personal connection, in a myriad of ways. As the town of Bedford Falls sings "Auld Lang Syne" together, with great passion, the song resonates strongly, and the message is clear. The power of the human connection is on full display in that room. Capra's story emphasizes the simple lesson that each individual impacts the world, and all of those whom he or she encounters in life. The "ripple effect" of our actions is a dominant theme in the movie, and the sacred power of such an effect is quite evident as the story concludes in that modest living room. As the townspeople present the basket of money collected throughout the day, and the celebration begins, the remark is made by Harry, that George is now the "richest man in town!" With this gift, George's money issues are over, he avoids jail and is reunited with his family, and, most importantly, he now fully recognizes and genuinely understands the real value of our human existence...
Kindness begets Kindness.
Good really does prevail.
Our actions do have meaning.
Each life is full of value, and countless potential.
Each of us chooses to be a positive or negative force in the World.
Each of us has the power to help others, in the smallest and greatest of ways.
Quite a lesson!
Well, if I may be so bold, I feel a bit like George Bailey today...The "richest man in town"!
Words cannot describe the privilege I feel to be in Palmetto Bay, at Palmer Trinity School, at this very moment in both the life of our School and in the life of my family. My existence here is truly a precious gift, and I do not accept it lightly.
Accordingly, as I "catch my breath", rest a bit today, and gear up for what promises to be an exciting and festive few weeks, I say "thank you" for being such a vital part of the Palmer Trinity Community, and, selfishly, for the Roberts Family. I continue to be grateful for each of you, and I share the following Christmas Blessing with you this morning:
May you have the gladness of Christmas which is hope;