Lifestyle & Human Interest

Lights, Christmas Carols Descend on Children's Hospital as Hundreds Show Up To Celebrate Holidays


An event at a children’s hospital in St. Louis, which attracted hundreds of community members, highlights “the healing power of presence.”

While many children are spending precious time with their families building holiday memories at Christmas tree lightings, ice skating rinks and Christmas pageants, children at SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital are restricted to the hospital due to their illnesses.

“They’re not able to go to their Christmas pageant, they’re not at the mall shopping with their families,” Sandy Koller, president of SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Foundation, told Fox News. “They’re here at the hospital getting better and healing.”

Thanks to an event called “Light Up Glennon,” however, the community is given the chance to show up for the children in the hospital and spread a little Christmas cheer.

Hundreds of people stood on the lawn with flashlights and shone them toward the windows.

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Police cruisers, fire trucks and ambulances were also parked outside to add to the heartwarming event.

“They came out of their warm houses to stand on the lawn in front of the hospital just to tell the kids, ‘We’re here for you, and we’re rooting you on, and we know you’re going to get better. We’ll see you soon,’” Koller said.

The hospital posted a video of the crowd bundled in warm attire, flashing their lights back and forth with children in the windows.

“We’ll say THANK YOU – but words cannot describe the warmth our community wrapped around our patients and families at our inaugural Light Up Glennon event last night,” the hospital wrote in a Dec. 4 post.

“The healing power of presence is profound – and we know everyone on site felt the support, joy and ‘light’ brought to them.”

Glennon Children’s planned three “Light Up Glennon” events this month, giving plenty of opportunity for healing children to feel seen and supported by others in the community.

Gary Hayden, whose son is a patient there, told Fox News the event meant so much to his family.

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“It’s really awesome to see all these people come together,” Hayden said.

“With my son being in here, I think it shows how much people care about what goes on in their lives. It’s awesome.”

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Kayla has been a staff writer for The Western Journal since 2018.
Kayla Kunkel began writing for The Western Journal in 2018.
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