As families in need came to the National Action Network for a warm Christmas meal and toys, Mayor Eric Adams said he was once one of those kids, going with his mom to the Salvation Army on the holiday.
"I'm just continuing the tradition. Trust me, there's a third grader out there right now that's the future Eric Adams, and he's going to need NAN like I needed the Salvation Army and I needed Mom," Adams said.
We asked Adams what was his message to New Yorkers this Christmas.
"This season is not thanks receiving, it's thanks giving. When we sit down with our family, we should give thanks that we're able to sit down with our family. But then we need to go out and understand there are a countless number of New Yorkers that are not able to be with their family," Adams said.
Adams referenced the 152,000 asylum seekers in the city and thousands of people in homeless shelters.
"We have people who are living on the street. Let's ride the subway today and give someone a pair of socks," Adams said.
At the National Action Network, Adams joined several politicians in reflecting on the holiday and the New Year.
"Despite some of the difficult times we may be facing, it's the one day of the year where we can all kind of put everything aside for the moment, enjoy each others' company," said State Sen. John Liu.
In a Christmas morning video, Gov. Kathy Hochul emphasized the importance of coming together in the wake of the .
"We've seen a a troubling increase in hatred and bigotry around our state. We witnessed the murder of innocent civilians and the capture of hostages in Israel, including New Yorkers, and the world has been shocked by the tragedy of civilians being killed in Gaza," Hochul said.
Hochul said the war has tested the fabric of our unity at home, and told New Yorkers "instead of yearning for peace, let's actually live it."
"Instead of giving best wishes, let's give people the best version of ourselves," she added.