Community is a word often used.
It has become almost a buzz word, being thrown onto anything in which the user is trying to connect with the local populace. But what does the word really mean, and how does it impact our daily lives?
Merriam Webster defines community by a unified body of individuals, such as the people with common interests living in a particular area, a group of people with a common characteristic or interest living together within a larger society, among some other items. All which provide some bond between individuals to be part of something larger through location, interests, knowledge, professional interest, policies, or background.
This definition provides some insight into the meaning, but leaves a lot to be desired. After all, does just living in an area make you part of something larger?
We look at the term as more of something that is earned, rather than just obtained by geography. A vibrant community relies on people to contribute, to bring something special to others, and to support each other in various ways.
Each week over the past 145 editions, there has been a character of the county on the front page, starting with Raymond Perkins on the issue dated Dec. 10, 2020. Ray passed away in August at the age of 95.
These stories and others similar are important to capture and help describe the soul of this community. These are a few of the people who live here and help foster the sense of unity.
Being part of a community carries an obligation and requires participation. Like anything, even the strongest community environment can wither and die without enough attention or nurturing.
With some towns suffering from squabbles between residents and local officials, we can hope that they can focus on this sense of community and find common ground to work from.
So many people that call Lincoln County home understand the special place that sits here on the coast of Maine. There is a strong community here, built by generations of proud people who have called this area home.
What is here is extraordinary, and comes with a charge to all of its residents to participate and improve on this sense of commonality. With this charge, it does not matter if your family has been here for hundreds of years or if you are a new arrival – find your place and make a positive impact.
Change is necessary, however, when you look to make an impact, try to be mindful of the things that make this community special.