In the spirit of the holiday season, many local churches are trying to find ways to give back to their community. While the ways in which different churches serve vary, they range from giving trees to Operation Christmas Child.
On December 15, the girls of Purcellville Baptist Church (PBC) youth group met at PBC to wrap Christmas presents for the needy, part of the church’s annual Christmas for Others program.
Each year, PBC “adopts” needy families in the area and supports them by purchasing Christmas presents for their families, as well as more basic necessities of which they are in need. The money for the Christmas for Others program was collected in the weekly offering at both the youth and adult services. This year, PBC was able to purchase gifts for ten families with a total of 43 people, the most people that have ever benefited from the program.
On the 15th, the girls of the PBC youth group walked into the church to find a plethora of Christmas presents for the families, with gifts ranging from Cinderella dresses and Play-Doh to toy trucks and toiletries. The room overflowed with gifts, all organized according to the family and family member. With Christmas music playing, each girl chose a set of gifts to wrap, and by the end of the night, had wrapped each of the presents for that individual. Some had even wrapped more than one set of gifts!
The following night, a large portion of the PBC youth group, including boys this time, gathered to distribute the gifts to the families. Until that point, the families had remained anonymous for the sake of privacy. The youth were assigned into various groups, each with an adult leader. After praying over what they were about to give the family, the groups drove to the family’s home that they had been assigned to. Once they arrived at the family’s house, students delivered the gifts to the family and were allowed time to visit if the opportunity presented itself.
Christmas for Others was, once again, a very rewarding experience for those who chose to be involved in it. The program not only benefitted needy families, but also gave the PBC youth group an opportunity to share their beliefs, in this case, showing Christ’s love by giving to the less fortunate, and being given the opportunity to minister to the families they visited.