Operation Christmas Child boxes are ready to send

Photo by Allison West
Allison West
Staff Writer

Over the past few weeks, the Bethlehem Lutheran Church has been working with Samaritan’s Purse to bring Christmas cheer and the love of God to children across the globe through Operation Christmas Child, also known as Shoebox Ministry. Participants in the program focus on donating personal care items, toys, clothing and a special “wow” item to children living in in the midst of war, poverty, natural disaster, famine, disease, and to those who live in Native American Reservations in the U.S.
On Sunday afternoon, Julie Hart, wife of Pastor Erik Hart, planned a luncheon after the morning service where participants could help pack the final boxes using donations from the congregation. A group of five girls attended the luncheon. They packed boxes full of goodies and munched on pizza to celebrate. At the end of the afternoon, the final box count was 38, with an additional five being dropped off later in the week. Last year, approximately 30 boxes were shipped out.
“We’re also thankful for the families who were eager to participate in the program, and some donated more than one box,” Hart added, “probably because of what they’re thankful for.”
The boxes will be taken to the Faith Baptist Church in St. Marys this upcoming Sunday, Nov. 18, to be shipped off to North Carolina. From there, the gifts can end up in any corner of the world. Those who are unable to take boxes to the Bethlehem Lutheran, or other participating churches, may take boxes to the St. Marys location until Monday, Nov. 19.
For more information, or to get involved call (814) 772-1953 or visit www.https://www.samaritanspurse.org/what-we-do/operation-christmas-child/.

The full article can be found in Nov. 16 edition of the Ridgway Record.