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A Lasting Gift

by Melissa Kaliciki, Annual Gifts Officer

“The wise lover does not consider so much the lover’s gift, as the giver’s love.” –Thomas A. Kempis

Often, people think of February as a lover’s month. However, times have changed and Valentine’s Day has become a fun day to express love to those you care for whether they are your spouse, a family member, or a close friend. Do you give handcrafted cards? Chocolates? Or do you meet for brunch? All of these are fun ways to celebrate friendship and community.

Is there a special gift you’ve been given that stands out in your memory? Miriam Eberly was kind enough to share memories with me of two precious gifts she received. Miriam grew up in Leola, and served 6 years in Belize with Eastern Mennonite Missions as a Nurse Practitioner. She traveled to over 80 countries throughout her life, saw beautiful places, and met a lot of great people.

Miriam says, “A family from the village of San Felipe, Belize, where I subsequently served for 3 years, sent me tamales. To this day, I don’t know how they got the tamales to me. The village was a twenty-five-mile drive! It really touched me because I know the family gave despite their poverty.

Miriam Eberly holding seashell she received as a gift.

The other gift that comes to my mind happened along a beach. I can’t even tell you where it took place now, but I was walking along a gravel pathway from the beach. A little girl, 3 or 4 years old, ran to me, gave me a hug, and handed me a seashell. Then she skipped away. I didn’t even know who she was. I still have the seashell today to remind me of the honor and blessing bestowed on me by this precious little girl.”

Meaningful gifts do not need to be large or expensive. Sometimes it is just knowing you are loved that matters most. Are you interested in giving a gift that lasts? If you give to the Caring Endowment Fund in honor or in memory of someone special, it will continue providing for residents for years to come. This is one lasting and meaningful way of showing love for a person you care about. If you have questions on ways to give a lasting gift, please contact the Advancement Office at (717) 509-5490.