Christmas is about giving — of yourself

The San Antonio Spurs offer their community not just great basketball entertainment, but they offer themselves and their time to great charities and organizations.

Christmas is one of my favorite holidays for many reasons – tamales, hot cocoa, baking, cooler temperatures (yes, I’m from South Texas), and seeing the expressions on my family’s faces when they open the gifts I spent time and money on trying to get just right. But in an era when Christmas has become over-commercialized (gee, I saw Christmas decorations out at a store before Halloween), it’s wonderful to know that the team I love and support, the San Antonio Spurs, understands the true meaning of Christmas – giving of yourself and your time.

This year we saw several public examples of the Spurs giving to their community.

On December 12, Pau Gasol, Bryn Forbes, and Patty Mills helped The Children’s Shelter of San Antonio with their Basso and Friends Christmas Carnival.

The Children’s Shelter puts children first by providing a safe, trauma-focused place for children in crisis whether the need is for immediate shelter, residential treatment, foster or adoptive homes. We work to strengthen families in order to break the cycle of child abuse and offer specialized mental health services for children affected by maltreatment.

Even the Spurs Coyote got into the act.

On December 14, several Spurs were actively helping the San Antonio community and spreading the Christmas spirit.

Marco Belinelli helped Methodist Healthcare San Antonio give away Christmas trees to families in need.

Gregg Popovich and Derrick White got into the Christmas spirit by giving away hundreds of shoes to the children at Pershing Elementary as part of the Shoes That Fit program whose vision is:

A new pair of shoes can be a life-changing event for a child. School attendance, self-esteem and behavior improve. Physical activity increases. Smiles return. All from an often over-looked item—a good pair of shoes.

Pau Gasol made a trip to San Antonio Methodist Children’s Hospital to visit with the kids, sign some autographs, take some pictures, give some gifts, and just spread Christmas cheer. (He visits the hospital several times a year.) The hospital’s promise is:

The evolution of culture is ultimately determined by the amount of love, understanding and freedom experienced by its children . . . every empathic act that helps a child become what he or she wants to become, every expression of love toward children heals society and moves it in unexpected, wondrous new directions.

Rudy Gay played Santa for the Elf Louise Christmas Project on December 23 and visited several families to “reaffirm the true spirit of Christmas through anonymous giving.” The project began in 1969 by a Trinity University student who was moved by a letter to Santa.

Rookie Lonnie Walker IV got into the Christmas spirit by surprising kids back in Reading, PA with a motivational video.

The Spurs may not be playing in the big Christmas Day NBA games, but they are truly displaying the big Christmas spirit. While we may not have their basketball prowess, we can emulate their off-the-court moves. Volunteer to serve a meal at a homeless shelter. Donate some clothes or food to people in need. Spend some time offering comfort and cheer to those who are suffering. Don’t forget that Christmas is more than the giving of consumer goods, it’s about giving of ourselves to those in need.

Merry Christmas, Pounders.

Source: Pounding The Rock

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