Lo­cal fam­i­lies make global im­pact through Op­er­a­tion Christ­mas Child

Record Observer - - NEWS -

GRA­SONVILLE — This month, sites around the coun­try will be among

5,000 U.S. drop-off lo­ca­tions col­lect­ing shoe­box gifts for chil­dren over­seas dur­ing Op­er­a­tion Christ­mas Child’s Na­tional Col­lec­tion Week, Nov. 12-19.

Area fam­i­lies, churches and groups are busy trans­form­ing empty shoe­boxes into fun gifts filled with toys, school sup­plies and hy­giene items. The Sa­mar­i­tan’s Purse project part­ners with lo­cal churches across the globe to de­liver th­ese tan­gi­ble ex­pres­sions of God’s love to chil­dren af­fected by war, dis­ease, dis­as­ter, poverty and famine. For many of th­ese chil­dren, it will be the first gift they have ever re­ceived.

This year, area res­i­dents hope to col­lect more than 20,081 gifts to con­trib­ute to the 2018 global goal of reach­ing 11 mil­lion chil­dren.

“We are hon­ored to be link­ing arms with our com­mu­nity to help chil­dren around the world ex­pe­ri­ence the true mean­ing of Christ­mas,” said Re­gional Di­rec­tor Mesfin Abera, “Th­ese sim­ple gifts show God’s love to chil­dren fac­ing dif­fi­cult cir­cum­stances.”

Nearby drop-off sites in­clude Im­manuel United Methodist Church,

102 School­house Lane, Gra­sonville, and Ch­ester­town Bap­tist Church,

401 Morgnec Road, Ch­ester­town. Dur­ing col­lec­tion week, drop-offs can be made at Im­manuel UM from 6 to 8 p.m. Mon­day through Fri­day and from 4 to 8 p.m. Sat­ur­day and Sun­day, and at Ch­ester­town Bap­tist from

For more in­for­ma­tion on drop-off lo­ca­tions, visit sa­mar­i­tans purse. org/op­er­a­tion-christ­mas-child/ drop-off-lo­ca­tions.

The gifts will fill shoe­boxes that will be sent across the globe to chil­dren af­fected by war, dis­ease, dis­as­ter, poverty and famine, a news re­lease states.

For more in­for­ma­tion on how to par­tic­i­pate in Op­er­a­tion Christ­mas Child, call 410-772-7360, or visit samar­i­tanspurse.org/occ.

Par­tic­i­pants can do­nate $9 per shoe­box gift on­line through “Fol­low Your Box” and re­ceive a track­ing la­bel to dis­cover its des­ti­na­tion.

Those who pre­fer the con­ve­nience of on­line shop­ping can browse samar­i­tanspurse.org/buil­don­line to se­lect gifts matched to a child’s spe­cific age and gen­der, then fin­ish pack­ing the vir­tual shoe­box by adding a photo and per­sonal note of en­cour­age­ment.

Op­er­a­tion Christ­mas Child is a project of Sa­mar­i­tan’s Purse, an in­ter­na­tional Chris­tian re­lief and evan­ge­lism or­ga­ni­za­tion headed by Franklin Gra­ham. The mis­sion of Op­er­a­tion Christ­mas Child is to demon­strate God’s love in a tan­gi­ble way to chil­dren in need around the world and, to­gether with the lo­cal church world­wide, to share the Good News of Je­sus Christ.

Since 1993, Op­er­a­tion Christ­mas Child has col­lected and de­liv­ered more than 157 mil­lion gift-filled shoe­boxes to chil­dren in more than 160 coun­tries and ter­ri­to­ries.

CON­TRIBUTED PHOTO

Pas­tor Todd Wil­liams of Safe Har­bor Pres­by­te­rian Church prays over the filled boxes and the chil­dren who will re­ceive them in a pre­vi­ous col­lec­tion.

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