Heartbroken man hands out Christmas cards to Newtown kids

Abbas Alavi hands out Christmas cards to Connecticut children.
Abbas Alavi hands out Christmas cards to Connecticut children.

Abbas Alavi knew he had to do something for the children. Not the slain children who lost their lives in a hail of gun fire Friday morning inside Sandy Hook Elementary School. Those children were given up to God, said Abbas, a devout Muslim.

So, before Alavi left his Danbury home on Saturday morning ,he grabbed a handful of Christmas cards lying around his home, stuffed them with crisp $5 bills, and headed to Saint Rose of Lima Church, the site of a massive prayer vigil the night before and a place of solace for many.

The Catholic parish drew Alavi, even though he is a Muslim.  He said the horrific shootings that claimed the lives of more than two dozen people, 20 of them children, left him grief-stricken. The tragedy was so sad that “even a stone could cry.” he said.

After praying in the sanctuary, Alavi waited outside the church and when he saw a small child emerge or enter from the church, he handed them a card and offered them a Merry Christmas.

“I wanted to do something nice. It makes me feel better,” said Alavi, 62, who does not have children of his own.

The gesture was not lost on the parents whose children accepted Alavi gift. Many families had gone to the church to prayer or light a candle at the many memorials set up on the church grounds to remember the children who died.

Alavi gave Sandra Hankins' daughter a card. The mother was not surprised by Alavi's goodness. She said the tight-knit community of Sandy Hook had come together since the shootings, and will continue to be a source of healing for the days, months and years to come.

“People have been amazing. And now this man hands my child a Christmas card,” she said.

Check Also

The Long Goodbye

People living with dementia frequently have 10 years to say farewell to their loved ones; but unfortunately, those years are often muddled with confusion. The person involved does not realize they are losing their memories, basic knowledge of self-care and themselves.


  1. This is suspicious, it is a propaganda serving a radical Islamic agenda. This terrorist sorry I mean this “devout muslim” is taking advantage of the tragedy caused by that terrorist sorry I mean the “mentally ill” to promote his radical Islam.

  2. Hanane,
    That sure reads as such a bitter comment, a deeply negative response.

    I am blessed by this man’s response and hope and pray such tragedies result in bringing people together not highlighting the ugly in the past or present.

  3. Hanane, what makes you feel that way? Are you speaking in sarcasm?

  4. I pray he will find true salvation in Jesus Christ….after all, he actually had Christmas cards in his home! Maybe he will stop to reflect on the true meaning of Christmas…maybe it takes a tragedy like this to stop us in our tracks and reach out to our Creator for healing, comfort and most of all, salvation.

  5. Laura,

    Why announce to the public that you are praying for this man’s salvation? He did a kind thing and deserves to be treated with respect.

    I am surprised you read so much into the whole Christmas card thing. I know many Muslims, Jews, Athiests, Sikhs, etc. who give Christmas cards to their neighbors and friends. It doesn’t mean they will covert to Christianity.

    Mr. Abbas is a devout muslim. Every aspect of his life revolves around his relationship with our Creator. Obviously, you think he has chosen the wrong path to salvation. I just wish you had kept your feelings to yourself. This is a nice story about a community working together during a horrific tragedy. Why make it about something else?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.