The most important ingredient is prayer

Wednesday, November 14, 2012
Charlie Butts (

It's full steam ahead for Operation Christmas Child, an annual project of Samaritan's Purse.

shoe box (Operation Christmas Child)Over the years, millions of shoe boxes have been stuffed with items for Christmas gifts for children in Third World countries. In fact, this year organizers are celebrating the 100-millionth box given.

The gifts contained in the boxes bless children across the globe, some who have never had a gift before. Operation Christmas Child spokesperson Rachael Mills tells OneNewsNow that families in the U.S. are using the project to teach their children how to give.

"And [to] teach them what it means to have nothing -- and have them think about If I never tasted candy before, if I never had a stuffed animal how they would feel," Mills shares. "And so it's just really amazing to see the compassion in these children and how excited they get to pack these shoe box gifts and think about and pray about the child who will receive it on the other end."

Read: What a difference a gift makes

The ministry spokeswoman explains that the process is not complicated at all.

"You just get a shoe box from your closet -- or you can go buy a plastic container that's a shoe box size -- and fill it with toys, school supplies, hygiene items, [then you] pick the age and gender you want to prepare a box for and then add other items that you think a child may like," she says. "We encourage people to write a letter, and of course the most important ingredient is praying."

Operation Christmas Child asks for a $7 donation to offset transportation costs, and that contributors drop their boxes off at specified locations by Monday, November 19. Before final shipment, the ministry adds additional items to introduce the youngster to the gospel.

Read AFA Journal article: Love in a shoe box

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