People from all walks of life came to the Garden of Angels Christmas concert last weekend. Ministers brushed shoulders with motorcycle groups; proud grandparents shepherded their adoring grandchildren; an gray-haired woman, decked out in a hand-painted holiday sweatshirt, stood shoulder-to-shoulder with an indigo-haired, ink-tatted teen. We gathered together, all of us, to commemorate the tiny infants who are buried in the Garden. And we celebrated the more than 250 children who are alive today because of Safe Surrender for Newborns, including the baby girl who was surrendered just last week.
The Christmas tree was blanketed with handcrafted ornaments—bright-eyed ducklings and cheerful frogs were nestled among twinkling white lights. In exchange for our book donations, we received one of those special ornaments, each of which was labeled with the name of one of the babies in the cemetery. I chose Grace, whose short life is memorialized by this grave marker. Her name just happens to be my favorite word in the entire English language.
It was wrenching, really, to see the Remembrance Tree up close. It was blanketed with ornaments. And there are far too many headstones in the Garden. But it was wonderful to think about the rescued infants, whose lives were saved by Safe Surrender for Newborns. Grace’s ornament now hangs on my Christmas tree, and each of those babies’ stories is permanently etched on my heart.
I so wish you could have come with me to the celebration! But when I talked with Debi, founder and Director of the Garden of Angels-Safe Arms for Newborns, I gave her a copy of all the comments and blog entries you wrote about the Garden of Angels. She was touched by your supportive words, and for your plans to send books. We’re both grateful to all of you for sharing your generous hearts and loving spirits with the babies.