Misslionheart’s Grotto-blog

Misslionheart has decided to start Christmas early this year and if you visit her blog, you’ll find yourself lost in MissSantaland.

It does look lovely and sparkly and I do love the run-up to Christmas. Some people say it should start on Christmas Eve and not a day before but the build-up is exciting with all kinds of stuff going on for kids and adults alike. I personally think November is way too early to get into the Christmas “spirit” and I have a personal rule not to start any Christmas shopping until December.

But some things take a lot of planning and organisation. In particular, charitable events such as the Operation Christmas Child Shoebox appeal run by Samaritan’s Purse which basically asks people to fill a shoebox with practical goods such as much-needed toiletries…soap, toothpaste, crayons, colouring books, soft toy and even non-perishable sweets etc.. The box must be wrapped up but not sealed and have a label attached stating whether it’s suitable for a boy or a girl and the approximate age-range.

This project, which is much-loved and very popular in Western countries, especially with children, sometimes runs into controversy because of its somewhat stealthy evangelical agenda which is seen by some as exploiting people’s charitable nature to spread the Christian message. This is what the British Humanist Society has to say about it:

“Children all over the country have been bringing home shoe-boxes this month to fill with toys and presents for children in need in Africa and Eastern Europe as their contribution to the charity ‘Operation Christmas Child’. But how many parents and children know that their contributions are funding a massive conversion effort by evangelical Christians?”

Personally, I’m uncomfortable with being used to push the gospel and I also feel it’s a little unethical to send gifts to needy people with a subliminal condition attached but I have taken part for a few years now because it’s one way in which we know for sure that the children are receiving our goods rather than us wondering just how much of our financial donations are being syphoned out by corruptive forces.

christmas-heart.jpg One thing that I’ve always done at Christmas is buy a few spare gifts of which me and the kids wrap up, add a gift label stating whether it’s suitable for a boy or a girl and approximate age-range. Then we take them to our social services department or a church that is taking part in a Christingle service. These organisations will then pass the gifts on to needy families or children in care.

I would hope for people to consider older children too if they do this sort of thing because we tend to think of young kiddies more and teenagers are often forgotten.

Anyhoo, Misslionheart’s recent post has prompted me to get moving on this.


One response to this post.

  1. Posted by babybull40 on November 22, 2006 at 3:12 am

    Nice and thoughtful.. we have similar programs here..at Christmas and giving back to our community or local charities..


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