Did your family ever volunteer with a charity such as a soup kitchen, homeless or battered women’s shelter during the holidays? Or perhaps were your ancestors involved with church groups that assisted others during the holiday?
I'm not aware of my ancestors' activities regarding charitable work during the Christmas holiday. Growing up, I do not remember any specific activity directly tied to Christmas.
As an adult, our family has been involved with one small endeavor during Christmas-time, and that is Operation Christmas Child. Eileen helped to spearhead the collection of items and we all helped with the packaging and deliver of the shoeboxes to the drop-off site. We became involved with this organization several years ago, when we members of a small United Methodist Church. After we switched churches and denominations to the larger Southern Baptist mega-church, we continued to be a part of the organization and distribution of the shoeboxes. Sad to say, the participation rate and output was greater in the smaller church (30 or so in attendance) than in the mega-church (nearly 1000 attendees).
For the past few Christmases, we have been church-homeless, and I admit that I miss participating in this project. I know that I don't have to be tied into a church to participate, but somehow, it has fallen to the wayside.