Operation Christmas Child, also known to many as the Shoebox Project, is an outreach of Samaritan’s Purse.
Samaritan’s Purse is a nondenominational evangelical Christian organization providing spiritual and physical aid to hurting people around the world. Since 1970, Samaritan’s Purse has helped meet needs of people who are victims of war, poverty, natural disasters, disease, and famine with the purpose of sharing God’s love through His Son, Jesus Christ.
Many of our parishioners pack shoeboxes every fall, to be distributed worldwide. In addition to the toys and other items children receive in their shoeboxes, they also receive the Good News of Christ.
Every shoebox gift delivered by Operation Christmas Child is a tangible expression of God’s amazing love. But a shoebox is just the beginning. It also presents an opportunity in more than 100 countries for our church partners to invite children into a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ through The Greatest Journey.
As shoebox gifts are distributed, local pastors or church leaders present the Gospel in a fun way designed for kids while family and friends listen in. Along with their shoebox gift, children also receive The Greatest Gift, a colorful presentation of the Gospel in their own language.
Their shoebox is the first gift many children have ever received! The treasures and personal letters inside communicate that someone cares for them and give them an opportunity to experience the love of God.
After receiving shoebox gifts, boys and girls are invited to enroll in The Greatest Journey, our 12-lesson discipleship program. They learn from trained local volunteers what it means to faithfully follow Christ and share their faith with others.*
This is a wonderful ministry that brings great joy to children all over the world. If you have not participated in the past (and even if you have) please take a few minutes to look at some of the videos below, and see the joy on the faces of the children as they open their shoeboxes.
If you are not sure what to put in a shoebox, Uncle Si has some pointers about what NOT to pack. And enjoy some Operation Christmas Child packers as they get into the Christmas spirit.
If you would like to participate, but can’t pack a shoebox,
you can “sponsor” a filled shoebox. We will be accepting donations to
fill shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child until the fourth Sunday in October. If you choose
to fill a Shoebox yourself, please make sure it gets to us by that date at the latest. If you want to fill a shoebox, you can pick up boxes and labels in the parish house. There will also be a link to build a box online, when our Build-a-Box page is active.
*Courtesy of Samaritan's Purse website