Morgan getting back to basics

Published 12:00 am Thursday, November 29, 2007

It probably won’t surprise anyone who knows her, but Betty Morgan has decided to take on the worldly mindset that says Christmas is a time just for collecting Ipods, plasma TVs and Bratz dolls.

After all, this is a woman who at the age of 36 left her hometown of Ironton to move herself and her nine children to Columbus to get a job.

A single mother, Morgan found work with the state of Ohio, but saw her future limited without a college degree. Undaunted, she worked by day, took classes at Franklin University by night and was a mom 24-7. In three years she was awarded a degree in business administration.

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Now, she’s focusing that kind of determination on the ever-growing commercialism she sees attached to Christmas. It’s not that she’s against commercialism per se. No, it’s more that Morgan wants everyone — but children especially — to remember who really started the holiday and what his message is.

“There’s another side of the story,’’ she said. “Do you know what Santa Claus is the symbol of? It’s Jesus. The greatest gift of all is love and that is what Christ is all about.

“That is what Christ put us here for … to serve Him and tell others about Him. And this is just an indirect way to tell others about the reason for the season.’’

Her game plan is both simple and creative. She has written a Letter from Santa Claus, straight from Candy Cane Lane, Santa Land, North Pole, that she will personalize with a child’s name and age. Then she’ll send the missive addressed to the child via snail mail.

The cost of the letter is $5, which covers postage and handling. Parents wishing a letter sent to a child may contact Morgan at 202 Park Ave., Apt. 408, Ironton, Ohio 45638 or via email at

The deadline for letters is Dec. 15.

Morgan plans to donate

$1 from each letter sent to the building fund of Sharon Baptist Church where she never missed a Sunday after she came back to Ironton in 1999 until she had a stroke a year ago.

The letter features a colorful sketch of Mr. Claus putting presents around a tree. Inside the letter will be a star that the child can hang on his Christmas tree at home. But for Morgan it means more than just an ornament.

As she writes in the letter, “It is a symbol of the star that led the wise men to the manger where Jesus was born. You can hold it, put it on your tree and hang it where you can see it. When you see it, remember the greatest gift of the season is the birth of Jesus.’’