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On Thanksgiving Day, Michelle Schmidt, mother of Annie Schmidt, shared a letter her daughter, who recently passed away, wrote to her younger brothers when they entered high school. The letter was previously shared at Annie’s funeral service. After giving her brothers advice on the hierarchy of high school, Schmidt gave her brothers advice on how to be happy.
“The best kind of leader is motivated by charity, the pure love of Christ,” Schmidt wrote. “And something I know to be true is that charity never faileth! In other words: If you sit by lonely people at lunch, because you care about them, you will be happy.”
Schmidt proceeds to give several other examples of how to show charity in high school.
“If you ask a girl on a date, who may not be the most popular or pretty (but she had a wise or inspiring comment in seminary) because you want her to know that she is also of much worth and that you admire and encourage her strenuous efforts to do what is right,” Schmidt wrote. “Seeing and feeling the appreciation in her eyes and from her heart. This will make you happy.”
The post received 117 comments on Facebook, including one from a mom who shared how Schmidt’s younger brothers responded to her advice.
“Tears are streaming down my face as I read this and now realize what an incredible impact Annie had on my family’s life,” Chris Tolman Hatch wrote. “I never had the chance to meet her, but I can attest to the fact that Jonny and Chris took her words to heart. They became friends with my ‘lonely and different’ son in high school. I was leery and protective at first, as my son had just re-entered public school after five years and had problems with bullies.
“But I soon realized they were genuine. They invited him to group dances, group activities and ever road trips. I’m certain he spent more waking hours at the Schmidts’ house than ours during his senior year. They embraced and loved his quirkiness, and I will always be grateful to them.”
In a comment on the post, Michelle Schmidt added, “Despite an ache inside that penetrates into the deepest recesses of my soul, so much to be grateful for on this Thanksgiving Day!!”
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