Operation Christmas Child Shoebox
It’s time to assemble your Operation Christmas Child shoe-boxes! Once again Emmanuel will be participating in an international outreach program called Operation Christmas Child. This important ministry is sponsored by Samaritan’s Purse which is part of Billy Graham’s ministry, www.samaritanspurse.org. For the past 20+ years, individuals and families have filled shoe-boxes with small gift items from the list of suggested items. These boxes are collected and shipped to orphanages, hospitals, refugee camps, slums and churches in mostly war-torn countries. Also inside these boxes are Bible lessons that tell the love of Jesus Christ. Many of these children have never received a gift. And for some, this may be the only opportunity they will ever have to hear the Gospel.
How do I get started?
Decorated boxes are available at church or you may use a shoe-box from home or a new plastic container that is about the same size. Shoe-boxes from home may be wrapped in holiday paper but they must open for inspection at the collection center. Choose to shop for a boy or girl. Choose the age of the child: 2-4 years or 5-9 years or 10-14 years. People always ask which age group receives the least amount of boxes and the answer is boys from 10-14 years and a close second is boys aged 2-4 years.
Than have fun shopping for your child. Kids love variety. Also, please consider including a bar of Ivory soap with a Ziploc bag and a wash cloth. Disease and illness are a huge threat to these children and hygiene items are things they don’t have access to. For our computer savvy friends, Pinterest has a huge list of possible items to include in your shoe-box along with ideas for handmade items that can be created. Operation Christmas Child also has a Facebook page that lists shoebox ideas and shares inspirational stories from their shoe-box distributions.
DO NOT INCLUDE: liquid hand sanitizer, body lotions, glue, and anything else that comes in liquid or lotion form; used or damaged items, war-related items such as toy guns, knives, or military figures; chocolate or food; out-of-date candy; medications or vitamins; breakable items such as glass containers or snow globes; aerosol cans; Harry Potter or items associated with magic; or items with American flags such as t-shirts, bags, etc.
Pack your box and attach the recipient label to the top which states boy/girl and the child’s age range.
Rubber band your box closed but please do not tape your box shut for safety reasons. Also, all your items must fit inside the shoe-box and allow the box to close properly.All Operation Christmas Child shoe-boxes must be returned to church before or on Sunday, November 15, so they can be taken to our local collection center. We are inviting individuals, families, and groups to get involved. Remember: One more shoe-box represents one more opportunity to introduce a child to Jesus Christ. If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact me:
Deb Adler at 410-255-2733