Retired Priest Plays Santa To Needy Children

Bobby Green said, "Just like Santa coming down today."

Monsignor James Hannon, a retired priest from Ocean Springs, brought the toys. Hannon made more than 75 toys this year, all by hand.

"I enjoy making those things. I do," said Hannon. "That's my reward I think. Giving them out makes it all worth while." For ten years, Monsignor Hannon has made toys for tots and delivered them every year before Christmas at the food pantry in Ocean Springs. But this year, he decided to come to Pascagoula.

"I thought this would be a good place to give out toys for tots and it was." After being set up for only an hour, almost all the toys were gone. The kids were very excited about all the toys they got.

"I got a truck. I've been playing with it," said one child. Father Hannon works on the toys year round getting ideas from toys he sees in stores and magazines. And he says like Santa, he has elves who donate wood, help paint and distribute the toys.

"So it's combined effort. Not just me a lot of other people are involved too. And they all enjoy it and all want to be part of it and that makes me very happy." And he says like Jesus, he hopes his gifts will provide happiness for children this Christmas season.