Romanian Andy Bollinger & Russian Elena Hagemeir tell of, as small children, receiving an Operation Christmas Child shoebox at Christmastime. Andy’s Christmas was usually only a bit of fruit and perhaps some chocolates, for “… putting food on the table was the priority …” Elena got her OCC shoebox “… when I was in my second orphanage…” It included items like a pair of socks, which she treasured, for she had never owned anything before that was hers alone, and her first toothbrush (“…we had to share tooth brushes in the orphanage …” Both young women now live in the United States and tell their stories to groups to underscore the power of love that is received by poor children through the shoeboxes they receive.
You will be so moved as you listen to Andy and Elena share their warm and gripping stories – brief as they are — and hopefully be motivated to have the joy of filling shoeboxes for one or more poor children somewhere in the world.
In doing so, please include a picture of yourself and your family. We are told that the children receiving the shoeboxes with family pictures usually — in their minds and hearts – makes them feel that they are loved and a part of your family.
For more information, go to www.samaritanspurse.org. For locating a drop-off point nearest you, at the website click on Operation Christmas Child and enter your zip code.
As of this writing, the area wherein I live, in St. Louis, MO, of the Ten Missouri Counties nearest St. Louis, 400 churches have a goal of gathering 36,000 shoeboxes … with a Hallelujah goal of thousands more than that.