Donna Leigh

Donna Leigh

Share goodness and #sharegoodness

Find little ways to show people you care.

  • By Donna Leigh For the Juneau Empire
  • Sunday, June 30, 2019 9:17am
  • Neighbors

If you have been in Juneau a few years, you may remember “The Year of Kindness” initiative that the Juneau Police Department instigated. Individuals and groups were tasked to go out of their way to be kind, to make the year of 2017 a year of kindness.

Stories were shared each day on local media outlets about kind deeds in our community. Kindness was shown to others in everyday ways as well as extraordinary ways. Lost wallets were found and turned in. Inspirational sticky notes put on student lockers. Good Samaritans helped change a tire. Coffee was bought for the person behind us next in line. Hands were shook. Smiles shared. Snow was shoveled for unexpecting neighbors. Cookies were shared. Food donated. Tasks completed. The list was endless. We saw a positive change in our community, which was the goal of the initiative.

Kindnesses still happened in 2018 and are happening now in 2019. I think 2017 was a bit different though. We talked a LOT in our community about kindness. It made kindness the thing to do and was prevalent in the minds of Juneau citizens. Youth groups, adult clubs, individuals and business all made extra efforts to show kindness. We celebrated kindnesses and we were more aware of kindness, looking for even more ways to be kind. Juneau ROCKS took over the year of kindness for 2018, and we are still working as a community to be more kind in 2019.

[Let’s continue kindness in 2019]

As you may have heard, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has a Christmas initiative each year. The past few years it has been titled, “Light the World.” Each day of December there are suggestions available on a calendar for how we can light a small corner, or a large corner of world with a light of kindness and love. For 2019 the church is adding the hashtag #sharegoodness.

Christmas now, when it is only June?! Is it too early in the year before Christmas? We tend to be hyper aware of kindness and act more kind during the holiday season in December. But shouldn’t we be kind all year? Even in June, July and August.

Jesus Christ and His gospel are our ultimate example of kindness. He led and taught a lifetime of kindness, not just a year or a season. I am reminded of several scriptures that remind us of the teachings of Jesus and his disciples. In the New Testament: John 13: 34, 35 “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.”

[A Year of Kindness: Thank you Juneau]

In the Old Testament: Ruth showed love and goodness to her mother in law. In the Book of Mormon; Another Testament of Jesus Christ: Mosiah 2:17, the prophet Mosiah taught “And behold, I tell you these things that ye may learn wisdom; that ye may learn that when ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God.” Another scripture in the New Testament, Thessalonians 4:9, teaches us, “But as touching brotherly love ye need not that I write unto you: for ye yourselves are taught of God to love one another.”

Let’s start a season of #sharegoodness now. Let’s start in June. How will you share goodness? Smile at a neighbor. Wave to a stranger. Hold open a door. Send a note. Buy a tea for the person in line behind you. Assist an elderly friend. Be understanding of others. Take dinner to a sick friend. Give a hug. Share time with a family member. Read a book to a child. Let a youth know you care.

Let’s open our eyes and our hearts and #sharegoodness in not only new ways, but in everyday ways. Let’s #sharegoodness and show kindness everyday. Juneau is an amazing place. We each have a lot of good to share and a light to shine!

• Donna Leigh is member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. She enjoys serving in the church and community, hiking, running, reading and spending time with her family, including their golden retriever. “Living Growing” is a weekly column written by different authors and submitted by local clergy and spiritual leaders.

More in Neighbors

This resting dog’s nose is at work all the time and is more than 1,000 times more sensitive than yours. (Photo of a tired-out Cora by Ned Rozell)
Alaska Science Forum: The world according to a dog’s nose

A dog can tell you a lot about the outdoors. When a… Continue reading

An Earth Day message posted on Facebook this spring by the University of Alaska Southeast refers to environmental stewardship and climate change activities, including these kayaks used for an oceanography course during the summer of 2019. (Courtesy of the University of Alaska Southeast)
Sustainable Alaska: Connecting to nature is vital to sustainable well-being and behavior

I have spent my career studying the aesthetic experience in an art-viewing… Continue reading

Laura Rorem
Living and Growing: ‘UBUNTU: I am because we are’

Ironic. As I received the 1998 Parent of the Year Award for… Continue reading

A crow is blinded in one eye with an infection of avian pox. (Photo by Kerry Howard)
On the Trails: Avian flu ailments

Among the many diseases that afflict wild birds, there is avian flu,… Continue reading

A change in season is marked by tree leaves turning color at Evergreen Cemetery in late September of 2019. (Michael Penn / Juneau Empire File)
Gimme a Smile: P.S. Autumn is here.

Ready or not, here it comes. The days are getting shorter, new… Continue reading

A double rainbow appears in Juneau last Friday. (Photo by Ally Karpel)
Living and Growing: Embracing Tohu V’vohu — Creation Amidst Chaos

Over the course of the past year, during which I have served… Continue reading

Birch and aspen glow orange in September in the Chena River State Recreation Area east of Fairbanks. (Photo by Ned Rozell)
Alaska Science Forum: The varying colors of fall equinox

We are at fall equinox, a day of great equality: All the… Continue reading

A male pink salmon attacks another male with a full-body bite, driving the victim to the bottom of the stream.(Photo by Bob Armstrong)
On the Trails: Eagle Beach strawberries and salmon

A walk at Eagle Beach Rec Area often yields something to think… Continue reading

Adam Bauer of the Local Spiritual Assembly of Bahá’ís of Juneau.
Living and Growing: Rúhíyyih Khánum, Hand of the Cause of God

Living in Juneau I would like to take a moment to acknowledge… Continue reading

A calm porcupine eating lunch and not displaying its quills. (Photo by Jos Bakker)
On the Trails: Prickly critters here and afar

Prickles, thorns, and spines of some sort are a common type of… Continue reading

The Rev. Karen Perkins.
Living and Growing: Coping with anger, shock and despair after a loss

The last several Living and Growing columns have included reflections about death,… Continue reading

A female humpback whale Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve biologists know as #219 breaches in the waters near the park. When a whale breaches, it often leaves behind flakes of skin on the surface of the ocean. Scientists can collect sloughed skin and send it to a laboratory to learn about the genetics or diet of the whale. (National Park Service photo by Christine Gabriele, taken under the authority of scientific research permit #21059 issued by the National Marine Fisheries Service)
Alaska Science Forum: The welcome return of an old friend to Icy Strait

There was a time when Christine Gabriele wondered if she’d ever see… Continue reading