Sunday, December 21, 2008

A sweet generosity

Now that it's gotten downright cold here, people have begun to send M&Ms through the mail. Hooray!! They seem to be the "candy of choice" for the 21st Century American Soldier.

(Well, at least for *this* 21st Century American Army Chaplain....)

Anyway, many, many thanks to those of you who've done so.

When the weather was so hot, and SFC McG and I had to fly somewhere, I took to putting four bottles of water into the freezer and freezing them solid prior to leaving for the LZ (landing zone). I'd hand them to one of the gunners to share with each of the crew members (the two pilots (Officers or Warrant Officers) and the gunners (both Enlisted)). With the temperature in the aircraft easily being 109 degrees (according to my thermometer, which is pretty accurate), the crew seemed very appreciative.

Now that it's frigid air (get it, "Frigidaire"?) flying, I figure that frozen water is probably not quite as appropriate.

That's where the M&Ms come in.

SFC McG and I wind up flying on a lot these days (finally!). It turns out that the Enlisted Soldiers who serve as gunners on those aircraft really love M&Ms. I've taken to giving those candies to the gunners as they're leading us from the flight line to the aircraft. Even with their 'Darth Vader' headgear on, I can see the smiles break forth.

I suspect they don't have many passengers who do that for them.

(Since I have only a finite amount of goodies to disburse, and since Warrants and Officers get more perks than do the Enlisted, I'm focusing YOUR largesse upon the Enlisted Soldiers. With two gunners on each of the flights we take per mission -- at least two flights, maybe more -- that's at least four gunners (or more!) who need M&Ms per day. It adds up.)

You will be enriched in every way for your great generosity, which will produce thanksgiving to God through us; for the rendering of this ministry not only supplies the needs of the saints but also overflows with many thanksgivings to God. (NRSV: 2Cor 9:11-12)

Thanks for making their lives a little better through your generosity!

Happy Fourth Sunday of Advent, too.

Blessings and peace to one and all,

Fr. Tim, SJ

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