Innisfree Spirit Ministry

Innisfree Moment Archive

December 2018

Returning to the Light

Returning to the Light

Please meet my cherished friend, Rudolph. We have spent many years together, since I brought him home from a local craft fair. What I didn't know until receiving an email from my friend, Rev. Carrie Hunter, was the heartwarming story that led to the popular Christmas song, Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer, which had its origin in Canada. Paraphrasing the true story:

In 1938, Robert L. May, a copywriter at the Timothy Eaton Department Store in Toronto during the Great Depression, was depressed and heart-broken, with savings depleted, living in a small drafty apartment with his 4-year-old daughter, and trying to comfort her following the death of his wife just before Christmas. Unable to afford a gift, he was determined to make one - a storybook. Embellishing it with each telling, it became a fable based on his own early unhappy life as a misfit outcast, about a little reindeer named Rudolph with a big shiny nose.

Somehow the general manager of the T. Eaton store heard of it and offered Bob May a nominal fee to purchase the rights and give copies to children visiting Santa in their stores; by 1946 over six million had been distributed. That year, when a major publisher wanted to purchase the rights from Eaton's to print an updated version, the CEO of Eaton's - in an unprecedented gesture of kindness - returned all rights back to Bob. The book became a best-seller, followed by toy and marketing deals. Bob May, now remarried with a growing family, became wealthy from the story he created as comfort for his young daughter. And, released in 1949, with lyrics and music written by Bob's brother-in-law, Johnny Marks, is the beloved song we know today about Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer, initially recorded by singing cowboy, Gene Autry.

Last night I pulled out my sheet music copy of the song, a bit tattered at the edges and purchased in 1950 for one shilling (about ten cents). Now when playing it, hearing the song on the radio, or looking at my Rudolph, I think of how, eighty years ago, one broken man returned to the light out of the darkness, by writing a fable to comfort his daughter.

The Christmas Season can be joyous with its lights and music; yet, life's circumstances can affect us otherwise when experiencing the loss of a special person, or dealing with health or financial issues. Perhaps this story of Rudolph will bring a message of hope and comfort.

Until we meet again through this medium in 2019, I wish you Season's Greetings, good health and safe journeys, and leave you with a short 3-minute reading about real peace that was formerly part of my 2011 December newsletter. Blessèd be to you, and to yours!

Listen to the Real Peace reading

Dorothy B.
Dorothy B.

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Rev. Dorothy Blandford, Ph.D
Apt. 202 - 1655 Martin Drive
Surrey, BC, V4A 6E1, Canada