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‘A whole lot of awesome’

Church members, community filling 1,000 shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child

Published: Friday, Nov. 2, 2012 6:21 p.m. CST
(Photo submitted)
Coordinator Betsy Burnett attempts to hold up the teetering wall of boxes during the 2011 packing event for Operation Christmas Child. Church members hope to pack 1,000 boxes during this year’s event, which is being held today, Nov. 3.

For most people, an empty shoebox means that someone got a new pair of shoes.

For members of My Father’s House of Prayer it means they have another box to fill with gifts for Operation Christmas Child (OCC).

Today, Saturday, Nov. 3, members of My Father’s House of Prayer in Morris are joining forces with others in the community to pack 1,000 gift-filled shoeboxes for the outreach ministry of Samaritan’s Purse, called Operation Christmas Child.

Each shoebox is packed with personal-care items, such as soap, toothbrush/paste, comb, washcloth, school supplies, a notebook, pencils, crayons or markers, and then small toys, a stuffed animal, and hard candy.

The boxes are then sent to needy children all over the world, along with the good news of God’s love!

The church is calling their project “Shoebox 1k” and has been so encouraged by the support of the community.

“We have seen so many needs filled,” said coordinator Betsy Burnett. “One thousand is a huge number, but we have been collecting supplies all year.

“Many people only bring in a couple of toothbrushes here or a few toys there, but all of those small things add up to a whole lot of awesome!”

In addition to the congregation’s collection efforts, area businesses have donated soap, toothbrushes, toothpaste and other items. Several manufacturers and businesses have even donated items that were raffled off at a recent Scrapbook Expo. The money raised is used to help purchase items to help pack boxes; any funds remaining help cover shipping expenses of the shoeboxes.

My Father’s House of Prayer would like to thank the businesses/organizathat have provided support for the project. They include Big R – Morris, Holiday Inn Express - Morris, Robert J. Engle DDS – Morris, Dr. Halkyard DDS – Morris, Michael Colletti Dentistry – Lombard, Fellowship Bible Church – Joliet,  Craftwell USA, Fiskars, Chicagoland Scrapbooker Magazine, Scrapbook Expo, Peddler’s Den Rubber Stamping Supplies – Somonauk, Delta Kappa Gamma Rho Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution – Louis Joliet Chapter, Scrap N’ Dream – Aurora, Christian Youth Center – Morris, Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and NW Indiana Troops #70276, #70659, #70130, #70660, #70175, #70479,  and American Heritage Girls Troop #6122

For anyone interested in helping to pack, limited time slots are available for individuals. In addition, the group still needs pencils, toothpaste, small toys and money to help cover the expenses of shipping.

For more information contact coordinator Betsy Burnett at (815) 942-0800.

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