Go ask Is There a Santa?

Posted on December 3rd, 2008 by A/C

I first heard of this letter many years ago. It appeared on September 20, 1897 in the New York Sun. Young Virginia had begun to doubt if there was Santa, her father had suggested she write to the Editor of Sun newspaper stating “If you see it in The Sun, it’s so.” The answer she recieved from Fancis Church has inspired many ever since. A war correspondent during the American Civil War, he saw great suffering and a corresponding lack of hope and faith in much of society. A truly wonderful letter, a beautiful response just as inspiring today as when it was written over 100 years ago.

Read this, you will have tear in your eye and a song in heart.

Dear Editor,

I am 8 years old. Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus. Papa says, “If you see it in The Sun, it’s so.” Please tell me the truth, is there a Santa Claus?

Virginia O’Hanlon

Virginia, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men’s or children’s, are little. In this great universe of ours, man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.

Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! How dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus! It would be as dreary as if there were no Virginias. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The external light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.

Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies. You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if you did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that’s no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.

You tear apart the baby’s rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived could tear apart. Only faith, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernatural beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, Virginia, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding.

No Santa Claus! Thank God! He lives and lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay 10 times 10,000 years form now he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.

Francis P Church


Children today grow up so fast, it’s almost a flash of an instant and they are out in the big wide world for better or worse. Childhood seems to get shorter with each generation, let them play in ignorant bliss for as long as they can, it’s a hard place out there.

It breaks my heart, when a child of 5 or 6 says ‘there is no Santa Claus, it’s your parents who leave the presents under the tree’,

For two reasons:

That child has just lost so much of the special ness of Christmas, expectations, surprise and excitement, which accompanies every Christmas, and secondly they will never know there is so much more to Santa Claus than what is under the tree.

My eldest boys 24, 20 and 18 all still believe in Santa, because of what he represents.

You see Santa embodies everything, which is good, kind, meaningful, but most of all he gives us Hope of better things to come.

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night

and Yes I do believe in Fairies

9 Responses to “Go ask Is There a Santa?”

  1. mike says:

    This is my fav clip of all time on believing in Fairies:


    • A/C says:

      Oh Mike I love this Movie, Moppet has it on DVD her second copy she wore out the first one playing so much, she also wore out a hardcover book (the real story not the disney version..)

      You must keep your imagination, its one of the things we have all to ourselves and complete control over….
      I do believe in fairies, I DO! I DO!

  2. Jim says:

    I was 10 when someone at scholl shattered my Santa dream…

    Amazed that the red n white santa we alll know was a cola logo in the 1930′s…

    Fairies n angels everywhere!

    • A/C says:

      I’ll find the image of the original pre Coca cola Santa for you Jim… for my next Santa post….

      Marketing in its truist form… hmmm….

    • A/C says:

      thats so cruel, I am waiting for my girl to be told at school this year…. although she suspects… but every year is amazed, when there are surprises she didnt manage to find under the tree… we have great neighbours, we hid presents at friends houses… lol….
      so this helps, and when her friends know what they are getting and she is totally shocked, she loves it…..

  3. AC,

    That was beautiful. I am conflicted when it comes to Santa Claus and Christmas because for me Chirstmas is about Christ being a gift from God. However, I see the value in believing in Santa Claus. It is having that childhood wonderment, ability to fantasize, ability to dream, be creative, expectation and surprise. And, then it helps children move into more abstract thinking of the meaning of Santa Claus. This is not the same as believing in Christ; however, it is about hope, meaning and wonderment.

    I will never be the one to tell a child that Santa Claus does not exist because the meaning that he brings to a child and an adult is so important. So, AC will you tell Santa that I want an Ipod or our house cleaned, so we can fix it up. Actually, I like my second choice best. :-)


  4. A/C says:

    Hey CC

    I’ll Tell when I am talking to him I actually do know him… lol… seriously…. I do you will find out soon enough…lol

    Jesus and Santa are closer to each other than you think, they both spread hope, joy, wonderment, miracles, happiness, kindness, thoughtfully and all things good.
    Take away all the religious nonsense that goes with it, they are very closely linked.
    In the bible if you are good you go to Heaven naughty goes to hell
    Santa good you get a gift, bad you get a lump of coal….

    Given that St Nicholas became a bishop it is not a huge leap to make….

    But it is true take the lesson learnt as a child and carry them through to adulthood, and you have very caring thoughtful person…
    I love Santa… lol

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