BY-WAYS - 12/31/42 - Looking Forward to a brighter year - December 24, 1942

Happy New Year! May it truly be happier than the one to which we are about to bid farewell. The skies do look a bit brighter than a year ago, don't they? Our boys have made history in 1942 - magnificent history; a bright and shining book that we will be so proud to hand down to posterity. Yes, there are many "red letter" pages, written with the heart's blood of our heroes. May there be no pages besmirched with cowardice and treachery, to mar the beauty of our book of honor. Christmas is over. The whispered secrets have all come to light; the joyous scheming and planning have flowered into all kinds of delightful surprises. And never before have we prayed so earnestly for the Prince of Peace to come again, and rule on earth. In order to conserve electricity - and also light bulbs - we were asked to do away with outdoor Christmas lighting this year. And so our lights must shine out from within. So it is in this war-clouded world. All the brightness must come from within ourselves. Faith lies dormant there. We must bring it out, and really put it to work.

I believe - I mean, I'm going to share with you the poem I wrote for the Juniors - for Christmas, 1942. I hope it helps a little - to keep on trying:

In a midnight sky O'er Bethlehem Brave men are forced to work as slaves,
A star shone bright and clear - And children cry for bread.
To lead the Wise Men from afar, You have a place in this old world -
Who sought the Christ-child dear. A place no cloud can bar;
Our world is dark this Christmas-time - If you lead others on - toward God,
With war clouds overhead; Then You become a Star.

I wish there were time to tell you all the sweet and tender Christmas dramas that I witnessed in real life this year. But I've had that after-Christmas slump; and now it is Sunday afternoon, with an invitation out for dinner at 2:30. Our girl returns from Fort Leonard Wood tonight. Tommy has yellow jaundice, but is much better. He will have to be under observation for a month. He and Estelle called us long distance Christmas Eve. Oh, the magic of the telephone! And the greater magic of radio! The radio is our morale builder in this war.

Now I must close - with the best of good wishes for the New Year to all of you. May I say "Thanks" for the lovely greeting cards?

Florence B. Taylor

Next - 1/14/43 - Not everyone makes an effort

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