Operation Christmas, Samaritan’s Purse, is in full swing for this upcoming Christmas season. Boxes were delivered recently to several locations so participants could get started on building boxes for those less fortunate in other countries. This year, because of social distancing, there are additional ways to participate and there will be a no touch collection at Baptist Temple in McAllen.
Last year, The Rio Grande Valley area collected nearly 3,000 shoebox gifts.
Elizabeth Dukquits, the RGV Volunteer Coordinator, said they would love to surpass that this year, but “whatever amount we get is a blessing.”
Samaritan’s Purse is calling on churches and families to pack more shoebox gifts than ever before for Operation Christmas Child—making sure millions of children experience the Good News and great joy of the holiday. Samaritan’s Purse is committed to its mission of reaching millions of children across the globe with hope.
“Much of the world has been gripped with fear, and this is especially hard for children,” said Franklin Graham, president of Samaritan’s Purse. “Now more than ever, these boys and girls need to know God loves them. Operation Christmas Child delivers the hope found only in Jesus Christ.”
The Samaritan’s Purse project has been collecting and delivering shoebox giftsto children worldwide for more than two decades. This is a mission project that everyone can still be a part of, even with COVID-19 restrictions. Simply pack shoeboxes with school supplies, hygiene items and fun toys. Then, bring them to one of more than 4,000 Drop-Off Locations during National Collection Week Nov. 16-23. Drop-Off Locations will be listed starting in early November at samaritanspurse.org and can be searched by city or ZIP code.
Baptist Temple will be collecting shoeboxes during various times during the collection week – Monday, Nov. 16 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m; Tuesday, Nov. 17 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Wednesday Nov. 18 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Thursday Nov. 19 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Friday Nov. 20 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Saturday Nov. 21 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Sunday Nov. 22 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Monday Nov. 23 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. If you need any additional information on drop off times, directions, or how you can pick up a box (if they have any left), call Baptist Temple at (956) 686-5296.
Even if churches and groups are not yet meeting, organizations are encouraged to pack shoebox gifts at home. Through Operation Christmas Child’s network of thousands of churches around the world, God uses these simple gifts to make an eternal impact.
The organization also offers an option to virtually pack a shoebox gift. Through this online tool, churches and groups can also set up a goal page to rally together to reach a larger goal. It’s easy—simply set a goal, invite your friends, and start packing. Whether your goal is 50 shoeboxes or 5,000, anyone can Create a Goal Page and work together with church members, friends, and family to share the hope of the Gospel with children around the world.
When you build a box online, you will find similar items as you would if you were going to a store to purchase. The ease is that you can do this right from your own home, for about the same amount of money, and it still gets to a child.
For more information about Operation Christmas Child, Samaritan’s Purse and COVID-19 protocols, visit their website at https://www.samaritanspurse.org/what-we-do/operation-christmas-child/. Links are also available with directions on how to pack your own box, set up a Goal Page, volunteer opportunities, or to build a showbox online.
Operation Christmas Child, a project of Samaritan’s Purse, seeks 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 178 million gift-filled shoeboxes to children in more than 160 countries and territories.
Photos Courtesy of Samaritan's Purse