The overwhelming support shown to Fort McMurray evacuees by the residents of Morinville and area is heartwarming.

Help has always been freely offered when emergencies arise – Slave Lake, the floods, a neighbourhood home burning down.

As much as we all become consumed with the day-to-day entitlements like expecting our burger’s onions to be cut just the right way, it all fades away when truly important matters arise.

Nothing prompted the spontaneous eruption of support we have seen in the past two weeks but a deep human need to help, and nothing shall stop it until that help is no longer required.

Kindness and compassion often seem lost these days, but it is there when it is most needed.

You cannot capture in words the feeling that swept the Rendez-Vous Centre at Thursday night’s potluck, as stories of helping and being helped passed while strangers broke bread together.

On more than one occasion tears and laughter mixed in a single sentence or moment.

Unity frequently finds its footing in times of tragedy.

Finding unity in good times is also not beyond our reach and present if we look.

Uniting together is something we do in Morinville through our many festivals, food drives, and the occasional need to save a church steeple.

Canada was built on such a sense of community and it is what makes us who we are.

Keeping that in mind beyond the present crisis is the tough part.

Everyone who has stepped up to offer support whether organizing an event or stopping to speak with an evacuee at the grocery store has played a role in offering help.

Rest assured, the people of Fort Mac, though many miles yet to go, will not forget the kindness shown nor be hesitant in doing the same for any of us in a time of need.

Such is the Albertan way.

-SD

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