For 2.7 million children in the U.S., Christmas may be a time that intensifies the abandonment, loneliness and shame that come from having a mom or dad in prison. Angel Tree®, a program of Prison Fellowship, reaches out to the children of prisoners and their families with the love of Christ. This unique program gives you an opportunity to share God’s love by helping to meet the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of the families of prisoners.
We are excited about our second Angel Tree outreach. This year, we have 37 kids to care for, most of whom are from Allentown and Philadelphia. Because of the distance, we anticipate partnering with the Allentown HOPE church and a number of Sovereign Grace churches in Philly. We will buy and prepare gifts that members from local churches will deliver for us, while reaching out to these kids and their families. Look for the Angel Tree Christmas tree starting on Sunday, November 12!
Some guidelines for the program are listed below:
1. Gifts should be valued from $15-25.
2. Gifts should be wrapped, accompanied with the entire angel-shaped gift tags you received when you signed up. Use tape or other means to attach the gift tags to the gifts, but do not peel the gift tag or take it apart.
3. Wrapped gifts can be dropped off in Hub on Sundays (we will have a bin for the gifts) or anytime to church office during their business hours.
4. While earlier is better, all gifts need to be received no later than Sunday, December 3rd. This will allow time to get them to local churches for delivery to the children.
5. If your gift tag suggests buying dolls for girls and you would like to know the girl’s race, Catherine will provide that information on request.
6. If you are interested in forming long-term relationships with the children you’ve bought gifts for and reaching out throughout the year, Catherine Matthews can give you their birthday and their addresses. A few ideas for on-going support to these kids might include: buying a birthday gift, writing a quick note to them to see how they are doing, and sponsoring kids to go to summer camps (Prison Fellowship has summer camps just for kids who parents are in prison.). You may have more creative ideas to show Jesus’ love to these kids!
Please contact Catherine or Don Matthews if you have further questions. Email the office for their contact information.