Notes from Jan

For the Love of Little

July 12, 2018


Sometimes one needs to cry for what once was common, common goodness, small kindnesses that transformed and informed differences.

Monday night, two friends gave me the gift of dinner, a movie and their good company. Lavish gift for body and soul.  The small neighborhood theater filled. Word’s out.  Go see, Won’t You Be My Neighbor.  Wondering if it’s worth your time, google the NYTimes July 7, 2018 piece by David Brooks,   “Fred Rogers and the Loveliness of the Little Good.”

If you’re looking for an action thriller, don’t go.  This is slow, thoughtful, tender, respectful of children and differences, allowing the viewer time to ponder, remember another time, a better way.

As a young mom, I remember watching and trusting nothing harmful would come to Chad and Heather if they became hooked on puppets and a soft-spoken man who treated children like they mattered.   Not so of much of children’s programing today, blitzing, bombarding, marketing and then there’s the scene at many a restaurant, a small child, phone in hand, playing games until the chicken nuggets arrive.

Every Sunday we hear, ” Hear what our Lord Jesus Christ says, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.  This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.  On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”

A soft spoken man in tennis shoes and a sweater picked up the message and asked for more than 30  seasons something so small, so significant, “Won’t you be my neighbor?” Then showed us how to be one.

How’re we doing, Mr. Rogers?








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  • Reply Gail MacDonald July 12, 2018 at 12:37 am

    Thank you Jan for underscoring the importance of seeing this film. We loved it too and hope to buy it to share with others. Fred’s winsome, simple way with children and adults makes us long for such a manner ourselves. If those who read your blog are interested in reading more about Mr. Roger’s life. Amy Hollingsworth has written a wonderful book called The Simple Faith of Mister Rogers. I takes over where the film ended and fills in the blanks. It makes one think of what Jesus said of himself, “For I am gentle and humble of heart.” Mt. 11:29

    • Reply Shirley M Dubeau July 12, 2018 at 2:10 pm

      Thanks Gail,
      Will be sure to read Hollingsworth’s book!
      Will add it to my ever expanding “must read” list.
      Shirley Dubeau

  • Reply Dan Russ July 12, 2018 at 12:52 am

    Great film about a great man!

  • Reply Wendy Lane July 12, 2018 at 1:23 am

    I have heard it is very good, I’m looking forward to seeing it! Thanks for the great review

  • Reply Nancy Sheys July 12, 2018 at 12:04 pm

    I can’t wait to see the movie. When I was the moher of three toddlers, I would watch Mr. Rogers with my children. He brought kindness, gentleness and acceptance into my home. He was my neighbor, especially during New England’s long can winter’s.

  • Reply Shirley M Dubeau July 12, 2018 at 2:07 pm

    Thanks for the recommendation, Jan!
    It’s on our “must see” list!
    Since moving to Fred’s neighborhood (Pittsburgh) in January we’re even more appreciative of his gentle, consistent guidance of children (and therefore, subtly, their parents) to be good neighbors.

  • Reply Eleanor July 12, 2018 at 2:36 pm

    So happy you got to see this.I would love to see it. Mr .Rogers had a great message to our children. Have a great day! Eleanor

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