I visit an 85 year old veteran once a week.
His children (young adults) and grandchildren all live in other states.
He is confined to a wheel chair in a nursing home.
He knows he will never leave that building, or even his floor of residence for the duration of his life.
His hearing and vision are deteriorating.
He lost control of his bowel and bladder functions.
In his earlier years, he was ordained in his religion. He played a prominent role in his Church.
No one in his congregation knows who he is any more. He outlived those he served.
When I visit, we watch sports on television, play cards, or I read a newspaper to him.
I print out sermons from his faith and denomination from sites on the internet approved by his movement.
I read them to him, to keep him connected to his religion.
There is no gift shop in his nursing home lobby.
I asked if he wanted me to buy, address, stamp and send Christmas cards to his family, and those he knows who are still around?
His eyes lit up.
I have done this for him since he moved into the home. He doesn't remember me doing this form year to year, but I do.
I bought a gift box of 18 cards and envelopes. They depict scenes of central holiday themes.
To be sure they are appropriate, I showed the cards first to thr present Pastor of his Church. She approved them as tasteful, and appropriate.
One of the security guards, who knows I am an Orthodox Rabbi, asked me why I am fussing over someone else's holiday?
My answer is that someday it will be his turn to live under such circumstances. When he will be warehoused until the end, he will appreciate something. When a person does for him what he would do on his own if he could, even if by someone who is outside what he is doing.
We best follow the will of G-d by serving all of His children. We are all part of the same human family. We are all children of the same G-d.
Happy Thanksgiving, Happy Chanukkah, Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and Seasons Greetings to one and all.
Peace and Abundant Blessings, Enoch.