210 boxes packed for
operation christmas child!
Operation Christmas Child is a project of Samaritan’s purse and has been delivering shoeboxes to over 146 million children in more than 100 countries since 1990, and Windy City Community church has been participating for almost 20 years. The late Harriet Hicks, wife of WCCC member Ray Hicks, packed her first shoebox in 1999 and her passion for the organization continued to grow. Harriet’s example inspired church members such as Tracy Fiddler to come alongside her and continue the program after Harriet passed away in 2009.
This year the WCCC Operation Christmas Child committee included Tracy Fiddler, Karen Parker, Miriam Rivera, and Judy Rustemeyer. The planning begins as early as September. This year the Parker-Fiddler life group hosted a packing party on October 24th which was attended by about 30 people who packed 93 shoeboxes in 45 minutes. Other life groups also hosted packing parties this year, and many members of the church community stepped up and contributed to the cause. This resulted in donating the largest number of shoeboxes as a church since the beginning of its involvement in the program. A total of 210 shoeboxes were packed and delivered by Judy Rustemeyer and Bobby Z. to a drop off location on November 19th. All shoe boxes from the Chicago area are then shipped to a warehouse in Minneapolis where they are reviewed and labeled. After a three week period about 12 million boxes each year are sent out over 100 countries, and sometimes even delivered in the states to an area that has seen a crisis or disaster.
The amazing thing about these boxes is not only the blessing it is for a child to receive their very own toothbrush or washcloth, but also the message that is included. Each shoe box includes a piece of Christian literature in the language according to its destination. Because of this many children are exposed to the gospel and the name of Jesus for the first time. In addition, every child who receives a box has the opportunity to take part in a class sponsored by Samaritan’s Purse titled, “The Greatest Journey” where they will learn more about the good news. This organization has blessed millions of children over the years and Windy City is proud to contribute to this cause. As Tracy Fiddler humbly stated, “It is a blessing when you can put together 15 items in a box and send it to the other side of the world, knowing that it is blessing a child, and through that gift they can find out about Jesus Christ”. THANK YOU TO EVERYONE WHO CONTRIBUTED!!!