MOST folk who know the bubbly, chuckling priest Fr Francis Mary would barely recognised him as he swapped his usual brown robes for some a tad brighter – the cherry red of Santa. He says the experience has shown him that the magic of Santa is real, for every girl and boy.
BEING Santa has been most wonderful.
I went into the experience for the second time knowing that it would be fun at some level but not fully realising the commitment it is to each and every child, and I mean every child.
I mean Santa really does exist.
He, and I must say “he”, Santa is not a woman.
Santa is a slightly overweight man, with sparkling eyes, a red Santa suit, black boots and a happy, jolly smile, who actually does ho ho and ho.
He is a laughable creature, generous in both his girth, smile and wit.
Santa comes to visit us on a yearly basis and to give out the Naughty or Nice sticker.
He also doles out red-striped candy cane.
Naughty gets you coal, or spuds, nice gets you a lovely lot of gifts.
They are delivered by Santa on Christmas Eve, so you had better be in bed, asleep, if possible.
He is, on this night of nights, a little timid.
His reindeer do their best to cart him all over the world with his gifts of happiness.
Hopefully he will find you.
Leave him some milk and cookies and a carrot for the reindeer. Reindeer food, if you have any.
I was asked by many a child, “Are you the real Santa?”
And of course, with a twinkle in my eye and a wink, I said “Yes, I am the real Santa.”
What makes me real?
Well, I actually am very close to this wonderful Santa character. I actually am a little overweight, I do smile a lot, I do laugh more than most, and I am joyful, cheeky and a bit magical.
This can be the nature of many an old man.
We do not have to be Grumpy Old Men.
So, if you are feeling that you’re heading towards the grumpy old part, head on down to the Santa school and start being Santa.
Children on the whole are wise, beautiful, generous, not selfish, sweet, wiggling little creatures who bring delight to their parents, friends and all those who stand back and watch them for a moment, sitting on Santa’s knee.
So, to those of you who do not believe that I exist, it is just that you are unable to see me.
This magic is in the eyes of the children, for they still know that magic exists in the world and they have the ability, insight, and wisdom to see it.
So, become a little child again, if only for a moment, and experience the Magic of Christmas.
Love, and Merry Christmas to every girl and boy, from a REAL SANTA.